News Release

On the 200th birthday of Gregor Mendel: Leopoldina celebratory symposium on the milestones of modern genetics and its pioneer

Meeting Announcement


The Mendelian rules of inheritance, named after the Augustinian monk Gregor Mendel, are the foundation of modern genetics. His experiments with crossing peas in the Brno monastery garden have been the subject of many schoolbooks and teaching materials. Wednesday, 20 July 2022, marks the 200th anniversary of Gregor Mendel’s birth, prompting the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina to host a celebratory symposium in honour of the great scientist. In addition, laureates of the Mendel Medal donated by the Leopoldina will look back at their own research paths.

Celebratory symposium on the 200th birthday
Gregor Mendel – a Pioneer of Modern Genetics

Wednesday, 20 July 2022, 1:00pm to 7:00pm
Leopoldina Main Building
Jägerberg 1, 06108 Halle (Saale)/Germany and online via YouTube livestream

The Mendel Medal was instituted in 1965 in honour of Gregor Mendel (1822–1884). It is awarded for pioneering achievements in the fields of general and molecular biology or genetics. Speakers at the celebratory symposium include the British evolutionary biologist and geneticist Prof. Dr. Nicholas Barton, who received the Mendel Medal in 2013, and members of the Leopoldina Prof. Dr. Magdalena Götz, developmental biologist and stem cell researcher, who was awarded the Mendel Medal in 2019, the biophysicist and optogenetics expert Prof. Dr. Peter Hegemann, a laureate of 2017, and the human geneticist Prof. Dr. Stefan Mundlos, who received the Medal in 2021. There will also be a contribution from Dr. Dame Jane Goodall in the form of a pre-recorded presentation. She was awarded the Mendel Medal in 1987 and has been a member of the Leopoldina since 1990.

The symposium will be held in English. It is open to the interested public and free of charge. Registration is requested by Monday, 18 July. The agenda and a registration link can be found at:

The event will be livestreamed on the Leopoldina YouTube channel:

Journalists who would like to attend the event, are asked to register by Monday, 18 July, by sending an email to

Follow the Leopoldina on Twitter:

About the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina
As the German National Academy of Sciences, the Leopoldina provides independent science-based policy advice on matters relevant to society. To this end, the Academy develops interdisciplinary statements based on scientific findings. In these publications, options for action are outlined; making decisions, however, is the responsibility of democratically legitimized politicians. The experts who prepare the statements work in a voluntary and unbiased manner. The Leopoldina represents the German scientific community in the international academy dialogue. This includes advising the annual summits of Heads of State and Government of the G7 and G20 countries. With 1,600 members from more than 30 countries, the Leopoldina combines expertise from almost all research areas. Founded in 1652, it was appointed the National Academy of Sciences of Germany in 2008. The Leopoldina is committed to the common good.

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