Barbara Hohn is a biologist who investigates molecular mechanisms in both microbes and higher organisms. Her early studies focused on the formation of lambda phage, a bacterial virus which infects Escherichia coli — work that led to the development of in vitro packaging and cosmid cloning, an important tool for genetic engineering.
Her later studies examined both genetic transformation and recombination in plants, especially as can occur through the actions of the soil bacterium Agrobacterium tumefaciens. Alongside her research, Barbara has been an enthusiastic educator, particularly through her series of lecture courses for EMBO, the European Molecular Biology Organization.
Barbara has received many awards in recognition of her work, including the Science Prize of the City of Basel in 1992 and the 2010 Ludwig Wittgenstein Prize of the Austrian Research Association. Barbara was elected a Member of EMBO in 1980 and a Member of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in 2006; she is also a founding Member of Academia Europaea. In 2014, she received the Austrian Prize for Science, the highest scientific award in Austria.
Interest and expertise
Plant genetics and genomics, plant genetic engineeting, epigenetics of plants