Özlem Türeci and Uğur Şahin

Their successes in cancer research can help save lives. Not only that, but the BioNTech founders Özlem Türeci and Uğur Şahin are bringing hope to the world with their vaccine against Covid-19. The hope that a pandemic that has already cost more than a million lives and that has restricted our individual liberties to a hitherto unprecedented extent can be brought under control. In the spring of 2021, Özlem Türeci and Uğur Şahin are to be honored with the Axel Springer Award for their life-saving work.

The Axel Springer Award aims to honor role models who encourage others through their actions to be more entrepreneurial, more innovative, and to take on social responsibility. For the year 2021, there can be no better examples of such role models than Özlem Türeci and Uğur Şahin. As physicians, researchers and entrepreneurs, they have achieved groundbreaking results in cancer research. The mRNA vaccine they developed against Covid-19 has the potential to give us back a great deal of freedom and to save lives around the world. I congratulate them with gratitude.

Mathias Döpfner

Press Center

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Learn more about last years' awardees