Diploma biology, University Halle, Germany, 1968. Doctor rerum naturalium, University Halle, Germany, 1972. Doctor of Natural Sciences, Academy of Sciences, Berlin, 1982.
Dr.habil.med., Universität Würzburg, Germany, 1982.
Group leader Zentral Institute Genetik, Gatersleben, Germany, 1976-1982. Senior research Institute of Molecular Biology II, Zürich, Switzerland, 1983-1985. Group leader Institute of Virology and Immunobiology, Würzburg, 1985-1992.
Head of department Institute of Pathology, Universität Würzburg, since 1992.
Married Karin Thoma Petzold, May 23, 1980. Children: Sebastian, Julia.