Biographical Note of Professor Franz-Ulrich HARTL

Professor Franz-Ulrich Hartl is a Director at the Max Planck Institute of Biochemistry in Martinsried, Germany. After completing his medical studies he earned a D. med degree in Biochemistry from the University of Heidelberg and then worked as postdoctoral fellow and group leader at the University of Munich. From 1991 to 1997 he was a Professor at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York where he was appointed HHMI investigator in 1994. Professor Hartl’s laboratory has elucidated the role of molecular chaperones in protein folding and discovered that the chaperonins – a class of ATP-driven chaperones – function as nano-cages for single protein molecules to fold unimpaired by aggregation. His recent research has focused on understanding the mechanisms underlying the toxicity of protein misfolding in neurodegenerative disease.

Among Professor Hartl’s honors are the Gairdner International Award, the Louisa Gross Horwitz Prize, The Rosenstiel Award, The Wiley Prize, the Albert Lasker Award for Basic Medical Research, the Heineken Prize and the Shaw Prize in Life Science and Medicine. He was elected as a Foreign Associate of the United States National Academy of Sciences in 2011.