Photo: Matthias Tschöp, MD
Matthias Tschöp, MD
Year elected: 2009
Current membership category: Active
Alexander von Humboldt Professor
Helmholtz Zentrum München
Deutsches Forschungszentrum f. Gesundheit u. Umwelt (GmbH)
Ingolstädter Landstraße 1
Neuherberg 85764
Phone: + 49 89 3187 2044
Facsimile: +49 89 3187 2182

Biographical statement

Dr. Matthias Tschöp received his M.D. from Ludwig-Maximilians Universität in Munich in 1994. He then spent four years as a resident in internal medicine and as a research fellow in neuroendocrinology at the Munich University Hospital before accepting an invitation for a postdoctoral fellowship at the Eli Lilly Research Laboratories in 1999. From 2002-2003 he established his independent research laboratory at the German Institute of Human Nutrition Potsdam-Rehbrücke. During the following three years, he discovered the role of ghrelin in the control of food intake, metabolism and body weight. His respective paper in Nature since became one of the most cited papers in modern metabolism research. He returned to the United States, where he was a tenured Professor of Endocrinology and Diabetes at the Metabolic Diseases Institute of the University of Cincinnati (the College of Medicine at the University of Cincinnati approved his promotion to tenured full professor in January of 2009). Until 2011 he was the Arthur Russell Morgan Endowed Chair of Medicine and Research Director of the University of Cincinnati’s Metabolism Center of Excellence for Diabetes and Obesity. From 2011-2018 Prof. Tschöp was the Research Director of the Helmholtz Diabetes Center and the Director of the Institute for Diabetes and Obesity at Helmholtz Zentrum München. In 2018, he became the Chief Executive Officer and Scientific Director of Helmholtz Zentrum München. In addition, he holds the Chair of the Division of Metabolic Diseases at Technische Universität München. Prof. Tschöp is the first German physician to receive the Alexander von Humboldt Professorship, the highest-endowed German research award (2012). He is an Adjunct Professor at Yale University. He is also an elected member of the Bavarian, German (Leopoldina) and European Academies of Science and serves on the editorial board of Cell.

His work focuses on gut-brain communication as a key circuitry that regulates adiposity, food intake, glucose homeostasis and energy metabolism. In particular, he concentrates on the potential of afferent signaling to provide a basis for new pharmacological or device-based treatments for obesity and diabetes. He discovered the role of ghrelin in the control of food intake, metabolism and body weight. His respective paper in Nature since became one of the most cited papers in modern metabolism research. He has published more than 500 peer-reviewed articles including articles in Nature, Science, Nature Medicine, Nature Neuroscience, Journal of Clincial Investigation, PNAS, Cell Metabolism, Neuron and The Lancet. He has received numerous awards including the 2020 Berthold Medal of the German Society of Endocrinology, the 2019 C. Ronald Kahn Distinguished Lectureship, the 2018 Carus Prize, the 2017 Carus Medal, the 2017 Hansen Family Award, the 2017 Charles H. Best Award, the 2017 Rolf Sammet Professorship at Frankfurt University, the 2017 Outstanding Innovation Award of the Endocrine Society, the 2017 Geoffrey Harris Prize, the 2016 Victor Mutt Award, the 2016 European Medal of the Society for Endocrinology, a 2016 ERC Advanced Grant, the 2014 Erwin Schrödinger Prize, the 2014 Paul Martini Prize, the 2014 Gill Distinguished Scientist Award, the 2012 Werner Creutzfeld Award, the Outstanding Scientific Achievement Awards of the American Diabetes Association (2011) and the Obesity Society (2007), the 2010 NIH Scholar Award, the 2010 André Mayer Award, the 2007 Christina Barz Award, the 2002 ENEA Young Investigator Award, the 2001 Schoeller Junkmann Award of the German Endocrine Society, the 2000 Lilly Research Laboratories’ President’s Award, and the 2000 Lilly Endocrine Research Award 2000. 

Institutional affiliations

Helmholtz Zentrum München - German Research Center for Environmental Health (Primary)


Drug Development
Translational Medicine