Science and Research

For the future of science and research

We believe that our support for young medical and scientific talents is a critical investment in the future. For this reason, the DKMS Stiftung Leben Spenden (Foundation for Giving Life) awards the John Hansen Research Grant (formerly: Mechtild Harf Research Grant).

Launched in 2015, the John Hansen Research Grant (known until 2019 as the Mechtild Harf Research Grants) is intended to provide financial support to up to four talented young scientific researchers. The grants are worth €240,000 for each recipient, paid out over a period of three years. This grant is intended to provide financial support to promising young researchers to advance the understanding of complications and therapeutic strategies in the context of hematological diseases. The grant is funded by the DKMS Stiftung Leben Spenden (Foundation for Giving Life) and administered by the DKMS gGmbH.

In 2019, the grants were renamed in honor of John A. Hansen, who dedicated his life’s work to the causes of graft-versus-host disease and the fight against it. Hansen was an outstanding oncologist, an excellent immunogeneticist at the renowned Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle, and a compassionate and empathetic physician. His outstanding achievements in the field of haematopoietic stem cell transplantation were instrumental in making blood stem cell and bone marrow transplantation more effective and safer – giving numerous patients a second chance at life.

As a long-standing member of the Board of the DKMS Stiftung Leben Spenden (Foundation for Giving Life) and the DKMS Medical Council, Hansen was an integral part of the DKMS family. That is why, after he passed away on July 31, 2019, at the age of 76, the Mechtild Harf Research Grants were renamed in his honor. This year’s call for applications has started! The application deadline is December 2, 2022.

For eligibility criteria and more information on the Grant, please visit or send an email to

Dr. Youli Ktena of Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, one of the 2020 fellows
"It is a great honor and privilege to have been awarded the John Hansen Research Grant. The grant will allow me to further my research. My goal is to use it to make stem cell transplantation safer for patients who need this powerful and life-saving form of therapy."

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