Professor Manfred Reetz, Max-Planck-Institute for Coal Research, Mülheim, Germany, receives the Otto Hahn Prize from the GDCh (Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker, German Chemical Society). The prize is named after the 1944 winner of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry and is awarded every two years, with the winners coming alternately from physics and chemistry. It is endowed with € 50,000 and presented at a ceremony in St. Paul’s Church, Frankfurt, Germany .
Professor Reetz receives the prize in recognition of his outstanding achievements in the field of organic chemistry. His research involves the introduction of molecular biology into synthetic organic chemistry in order to exploit directed evolution of stereoselective enzymes as catalysts in asymmetric reactions.
Professor Reetz was born in Hirschberg, Germany, in 1943 and immigrated to the USA in 1952. He obtained his Bachelor’s degree from the Washington University, USA, and his Master’s degree from the University of Michigan, USA. He returned to Germany to complete his PhD at the University of Göttingen and has been a Professor at several German and American universities. In 1991, he was appointed as the Director of the Max-Planck-Institute for Coal Research. He has served on the editorial boards of several leading international journals, including Advanced Synthesis and Catalysis and Angewandte Chemie.