27. September 2021
Peter Hegemann receives Lasker Award
© Hector Fellow Academy

The presti­gious prize is awarded to Peter Hegemann for his optoge­net­ics research

The Albert Lasker Award for Basic Medical Research is one of the most presti­gious prizes in the biomed­ical sciences that has been awarded since 1946. Almost 50% of the awardees have gone on to win a Nobel Prize in Medicine.

This year, the award honors three scien­tists “for the discov­ery of light-sensi­tive micro­bial proteins that can activate or silence individ­ual brain cells and for their use in devel­op­ing optoge­net­ics”, as stated in a press release by the Lasker Founda­tion. Hector Fellow Peter Hegemann was awarded for discov­er­ing specific channel proteins in single-celled algae. The advances of the three scien­tists enabled the field that is used to “untan­gle the elabo­rate networks that under­lie healthy physi­ol­ogy and neuro­log­i­cal disease”.

In a pre-recorded video message, Peter Hegemann empha­sized his grate­ful­ness for the award and expounded on the research journey that led to the founda­tion of optogenetics.

Congrat­u­la­tions to Peter Hegemann!