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BioNTech vaccine developers to receive one of Germany's highest honours

BioNTech vaccine developers to receive one of Germany's highest honours

BioNTech vaccine developers to receive one of Germany's highest honours

The German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier will award BioNTech founders Özlem Türeci and Uğur Şahin the German Order of Merit for their dedication in producing the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine against COVID-19

The duo will attend President Steinmeier’s first in-person awards ceremony this year

The awards ceremony, which will take place on March 19, 2021 at Bellevue Palace in Berlin, is expected to be attended by Chancellor Angela Merkel.

The German presidential office announced the news via Facebook on Friday, stating that Türeci and Şahin would be awarded the Federal Order of Merit for contribution to the “containment of the coronavirus pandemic”. 

BioNTech / Pfizer vaccine developers receive prestigious merit

Since late 2020, BioNTech has gained a celebrity-like status after the firm developed the first vaccine to be authorised by the European Medicines Agency.  Özlem Türeci, who specialises in cancer research, is the firm's chief medical officer and Uğur Şahin is the company's chief executive. The scientific super-couple have been married since 2002. 

Türeci and Şahin will receive the Knight Commander's Cross of the Federal Order of Merit, an award which less than 2.000 people receive annually. It is the only federal decoration of Germany, and has been awarded to just over 200.000 people in total, including both German and international recipients. 

Emily Proctor

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Emily Proctor

Emily studied International Relations and Chinese, and is now undertaking Master's degree in International Security. She enjoys writing, cooking, and playing piano.

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