MDC-BIMSB building

Berlin Institute for Medical Systems Biology (MDC-BIMSB)

Awards and Prizes

Major awards and prizes 


Leif S. Ludwig has won the Heinz Maier-Leibnitz Prize, granting him €200,000 to advance his research over a period of three years. 

Ana Pombo and Alexander Kukalev have been granted almost €400,000 from the German Research Foundation (DFG) to investigate how chromatin factors are involved in regulating gene expression.

Leif S. Ludwig has been awarded the Paul Ehrlich and Ludwig Darmstaedter Young Investigator Award 2023.


Simon Haas has been awarded a European Research Council (ERC) Starting Grant. He will receive €1.5 million over five years.

Michael Sigal has been awarded a European Research Council (ERC) Starting Grant. He will receive €1.5 million over five years.

Ana Pombo got elected as Fellow of the European Academy of Sciences.

Marina Chekulaeva has been accepted into the DFG Heisenberg program.

Simon Haas has received the Young Investigator Award 2022 of the German Stem Cell Network (GSCN).

Stefanie Grosswendt has been awarded a European Research Council (ERC) Starting Grant. She will receive €1.5 million over a period of five years.

Jan Philipp Junker has been awarded a European Research Council (ERC) Consolidator Grant. He will receive €2 million over five years.

Darío Lupiáñez has been awarded a European Research Council (ERC) Consolidator Grant. He will receive €2 million over five years.


Darío Lupiáñez has been selected as one of 26 researchers for the EMBO Young Investigator Programme. Starting in January 2022, Lupiáñez and his team will receive both financial and practical support for a period of four years.

Stefanie Grosswendt has received the BSIO Female Independence Award for her research on new methods to analyse cell interaction in embryos and neuroblastoma, an early childhood cancer, at the level of the individual cell. 

Jan-Philipp Junker has been awarded a generous DFG Sequencing Grant, together with fellow researcher Professor Nikolay Ninov from the Center for Regenerative Therapies Dresden (CRTD) at TU Dresden, for their research on cell regeneration in zebrafish. The DFG will fund a doctoral and a postdoctoral position and consumable materials as well as providing the two researchers with a budget of around €380,000 for the sequencing work.

Leif Ludwig has received the Hector Research Career Development Award for his research into the DNA of cellular power plants, the mitochondria. The award supports particularly talented young scientists as they embark on the first steps of their research careers.


Ana Pombo: Grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Common Fund - 4D Nucleome Program to support research of a multi-team consortium led by UC San Diego in the U.S on DNA organization inside cell nuclei and functions in space and time.

MDC researcher Jan Philipp Junker and his collaborator Maria Colomé-Tatché at Helmholtz Center Munich have received a €200,000 grant to improve big data processing to better understand how gene networks are wired together during development and disease.


Jan Philipp Junker: EMBO Young Investigator Award

Stephan Preibisch und Thoralf Niendorf:



Marina Chekulaeva, DFG grant to dissect the mechanisms of miRNA function in establishment of neuronal polarity

Marina Chekulaeva, grant from the German-Israeli Foundation for Scientific Research and Development (GIF), with Igor Ulitsky, Weizmann Institute of Science

Marina Chekulaeva, Coordinator of the EU-JPND multi-national consortiumlocalMND: Common architecture of local proteome, transcriptome and translatome across Motor Neuron disorders 

Uwe Ohler, DFG International Research Training Group 2403 "Dissecting and re-engineering the regulatory genome" (includes Pombo, Rajewsky, Zinzen) 

Ana Pombo, elected EMBO member

Stephan Preibisch, HFSP Program Grant 

Robert Zinzen, SPP1738.2 - Emerging roles of non-coding RNAs in nervous system development and disease

Altuna Akalin, Ulf Landmesser, BIH TT Fund Pharma 2017, use of circulating cell-free DNA methylation as a diagnostic tool

Mario Nicodemi, Einstein BIH Visiting Fellow, hosted by Ana Pombo 

Nikolaus Rajewsky, Norbert Hübner and Jan Philipp Junker, Chan Zuckerberg Initiative

Nikolaus Rajewsky, Stephan Preibisch, H2020 Innovative Training Grant „circRTrain“



Altuna Akalin, BMBF Summer School, Computer-based genomics in systems and precision medicine

Altuna Akalin, Uwe Ohler, BMBF de.NBI (deutsche nationale Bioinformatik-Infrastruktur); Epigenetics network (lead Benedikt Brors, DKFZ)

Marina Chekulaeva, Markus Landthaler, Uwe Ohler, Nikolaus Rajewsky, Matthias Selbach,  DFG SPP 1935 "Deciphering the mRNP code" (multiple subprojects)

Jan Philipp Junker, ARCHES prize of the Minerva Stiftung in collaboration with Erez Levanon, Bar-Ilan University, Israel

Jan Philipp Junker, European Research Council Starting Grant

Markus Landthaler, Uwe Ohler, BMBF e:Bio "caRNAtion" (lead Michael Gotthardt, MDC)

Markus Landthaler, GlaxoSmithKline Foundation’s Science Prize

Uwe Ohler, SFB TR175 "The green hub" (lead Dario Leister, LMU)

Roland Schwarz, Prize of the BBAW, donated by the Monika Kutzner Foundation



Altuna Akalin, De.NBI - Establishment phase Central Coordination Unit (CCU): RNA Bioinformatics Center (RBC)

Altuna Akalin, Uwe Ohler, Nils Blüthgen, BIH/Terminate-NB

Uwe Ohler, Nikolaus Rajewsky, BMBF de.NBI (deutsche nationale Bioinformatik-Infrastruktur); RNA Bioinformatics Center (lead Rolf Backofen, Uni Freiburg)

Nikolaus Rajewsky, Jutta Steinkötter,  Altuna Akalin, CORBEL (Coordinated Research Infrastructures Building Eduring Life-science services)

Baris Tursun, European Research Council Starting Grant



Nikolaus Rajewsky, Human Frontier Science Program in collaboration with 3 international scientists

Nikolaus Rajewsky, Honorary PhD in Human Genetics and Medical Biology, La Sapienza University, Rome



Robert Zinzen, SPP1738 - Emerging roles of non-coding RNAs in nervous system development and disease

Baris Tursun, FP7-PEOPLE-CIG, Marie-Curie Action



Uwe Ohler, National Institutes of Health/National Institute of General Medical Sciences, R01 Transformative Research Award (team with Dinshaw Patel, Tom Tuschl)

Uwe Ohler, HFSP research grant (team with Casey Bergman, Pavel Tomancak)

Nikolaus Rajewsky, Leibniz Award of the DFG



Nikolaus Rajewsky, Science Award of the Governing Mayor of Berlin



Nikolaus Rajewsky, Kick-off funding through the competitive federal initiative “Spitzenforschung in den neuen Bundesländern” (Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) & the Senate of Berlin)

Nikolaus Rajewsky, Global Distinguished Professor, New York University