Status: 20.11.21 5:38 PM
Founder of biotech company CureVac Dr. Ingmar Heuer was officially awarded the honorary citizenship of Tübingen by Mayor Boris Palmer on Friday evening. Hoerr has been working and researching in Tübingen for over 20 years. He studied biology and discovered in the course of his doctoral thesis that the so-called mRNA can be stabilized and thus trigger a strong immune response. Currently, mRNA technology still represents the greatest hope in the fight against the coronavirus. Hoare is the youngest of the city’s seven living honorary citizens.
“Listen as a major”
Doctor. Ingmar Hoyer received honorary citizenship from Mayor Boris Palmer, founder of CureVac who is considered the inventor of the mRNA vaccine technology, upon which vaccines from BioNTech and Moderna are based.
For Palmer, it’s clear: “Without CureVac, without Ingmar Hoerr’s prep work, we wouldn’t have had this excellent vaccine available and we’d be working even harder to contain the epidemic. So it’s actually a pioneer in major medical advances globally.”
Opportunity Brings an “Eureka Moment”
The discovery of the mRNA technology was a serendipitous, explains Houer. As part of his doctoral thesis, he discovered that messenger RNA can be stabilized. He still remembers exactly how he felt.
“First of all, disbelief. It was the case that it didn’t have to be this way, because the RNA molecule is very unstable, and it shouldn’t do anything.” He was also a little annoyed, he says with a smile, because he had gone to the outdoor pool before and then wanted to look at the lab animals again. And when he measured it, he thought: “Now I have to work overtime too, I must find out!” And that evening came the eureka moment.
Deep connection with Tübingen
Then he founded CureVac in Tübingen in 2000. So he created about 500 jobs here. He is happy that he is now also an honorary citizen of the university city: “I feel very proud, especially since I have a very close relationship with Tübingen. For years. This was my first city where I left home, studied here, met friends.” He had always been connected to the city and was also indebted to her for supporting her in this way.
In the spring, Hoyer retired as CEO for health reasons. However, he is pleased with the results of the recent study that the second generation CureVac vaccine is as effective as BioNTech.
You will soon see the message “In Dialogue” with Dr. Ingmar Heuer and our Director Roland Steck.
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