Source: Max Planck Society. The Neanderthal and us: Svante Pääbo is fascinated by the genomes of our ancestors. © Karsten Möbius
The director of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig is honoured for his pioneering work in the field of palaeogenetics, of which he is considered the founder. One of his most important scientific successes was the decoding of the Neanderthal genome. "His work has revolutionised our understanding of the evolutionary history of modern humans," said Martin Stratmann, President of the Max Planck Society.