On 21 September 2008, the German United Society for Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (DGKL) awarded the Prize for Biochemical Analysis at their fifth annual convention in Mannheim.
The prize, worth EUR 50,000, was awarded to Prof. Dr. W. Baumeister, Head of Max Planck Institute for Biochemistry, Martinsried, for the development of cryo-electron tomography.
Cryo-electron tomography is a method of investigating the spatial structure of macromolecular complexes in cells at an unprecedented resolution. Cryo-electron tomography closes the gap between the structural analysis of individual proteins and analysis of cellular structures at an electron microscopic level.
In the second half of the nineties, the crucial work on the methods of the working group led by Prof. Dr. W. Baumeister was published. His group was able to depict the cell nucleus pores at a resolution that had never been achieved until then.