The German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina has elected Professor Andreas Peschel, head of the Department of Infection Biology at the Interfaculty Institute of Microbiology and Infection Medicine (IMIT) and spokesperson of the Cluster of Excellence "Controlling Microbes to Fight Infections" (CMFI) at the University of Tübingen, as a member. Membership in the Leopoldina is an award for outstanding scientific achievements.
Originated in 1652 the Leopoldina is the oldest continuously existing academy of medicine and the natural sciences in the world. In 2008 the Leopoldina was officially appointed the National Academy of Sciences. In this capacity, it has two special tasks: representing German science abroad and advising policymakers and the public. The Leopoldina is under the patronage of the Federal President of Germany.
The currently more than 1600 members from over 30 countries advocate the free development of science as well as the scientific, political and public discussion of socially relevant issues of the future. Furthermore, they are involved in the promotion of young scientists and advocate for the protection of the human rights of persecuted scientists. Existing active members of the Leopoldina propose new members each year who have made outstanding scientific achievements in their field. The proposal then goes through a multi-stage election process in which the members of the Presidium and currently 40 senators must largely unanimously agree.