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Magdalena Goetz Hector Wissenschaftspreis
Marco Schilling

Magdalena Götz Receives Hector Science Award

Awards & Grants, Stem Cells, ISF,

Prof. Dr. Magdalena Götz has been awarded this year's 150,000 euro science prize by the Hector Foundation. The jury is thus recognizing the neurobiologist's outstanding research achievements.

Groundbreaking Basic Research

In the early stages of her career, Magdalena Götz delved into the intricate process of brain formation, exploring the genesis of nerve cells and their precise connectivity. Her groundbreaking work challenged conventional wisdom by revealing that the brain's stem cells were, in fact, glial cells, traditionally considered mere support structures. This revelation, previously inconceivable, motivated Magdalena Götz to embark on a pioneering journey: stimulating glial cells in the adult brain to generate nerve cells.

Ordinarily, the formation of nerve cells ceases after birth, posing a significant challenge in scenarios such as brain injuries or neurodegenerative diseases. The inability to replace deceased nerve cells exacerbates these conditions. Magdalena Götz's innovative approach opens new avenues for addressing this critical issue, offering hope for advancements in regenerative therapies for the brain.

Working together for cutting-edge interdisciplinary research in Germany

The Foundation's Executive Board and former prizewinners met in Heidelberg for the award ceremony. Founder Dr. h.c. Hans-Werner Hector welcomed Magdalena Götz and the other award winner, computer scientist and physicist Prof. Dr. Klaus-Robert Müller, to the circle of now 30 "Hector Fellows", who are jointly committed to interdisciplinary cutting-edge research in Germany. The two laudators, Prof. Dr. Dr. Christian Haass (LMU) and Prof. Dr. Bernhard Schölkopf (Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems, Tübingen), agreed that Magdalena Götz and Klaus-Robert Müller will enrich the "Hector Fellow Academy", which promotes promising early career researchers, with the excellence of their basic research, but also with their inspiring enthusiasm for breaking new ground.


About the Hector Foundations