Born on July 6, 1949, in Constance. Study of chemistry and biology, doctorate Freiburg Univ. (1977), habilitation in biology Univ. Tübingen (1984), Full Professor in Genetics Univ. Munich (1988), Director and Scientific Member at the MPI for Biophysical Chemistry (since 1991), honorary professor Univ. Göttingen (1993). Numerous awards and prizes, among them the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize (1986), the Feldberg Prize (1990), the Otto Bayer Prize (1992), the Louis Jeantet Prize for Medicine (1999), the Deutsche Zukunftspreis (1999) and the Federal Cross of Merit, First Class. Vice president of the Max Planck Society (2002 to 2014).