He was born on 4 December 1935 in Hermannstadt/Sibiu in Transylvania and went to Medical School at the University of Vienna. After specialty training in Dermatology at the Department of Dermatology, University of Vienna, and a postdoctoral fellowship funded by the NIH at the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minnesota (USA), Klaus Wolff was appointed Head of the Department of Experimental Dermatology at the University of Vienna and served as a visiting professor at Harvard University, Boston, Massachusetts (USA).
In 1976, he became full professor and chairman of the Department of Dermatology at the University of Innsbruck and in 1981 he was appointed full professor and Chairman of the Department of Dermatology at the University of Vienna. In this capacity he taught and trained generations of medical students and dermatologists. Focused research, internationally acclaimed, resulted in the elucidation of the mechanisms of various disease processes in the skin and in the development of new therapies.
Under his leadership the Department of Dermatology of the University of Vienna rose to be ranked among the five leading dermatology institutions worldwide. Klaus Wolff became emeritus in October 2004 and since then he devoted himself to the care of his private patients and to the publication of his text books.
In 2005, Klaus Wolf received the EADV Scientific Achievement Award. In the same year, the Klaus Wolff Fellowship was endowed by an American benefactor to support the training of young Austrian researchers at Harvard University. He was made an Honorary Member of EADV in 2012.
During his long career Klaus Wolff received many other honours and awards, including the Gold Medal, Austrian Society of Dermatology and Venerology (2003); Stephen Rothman Medal (1998); Alfred Marchionini Medal (1997); Research Award of the City of Vienna (1997); Vitiligo Award 1993, American Skin Association; Order of Distinction (Health), Commander, Government of Romania (2004); Austrian Order of Distinction for Science and Art (2004); Great Silver Order of Distinction for Merits for the Republic of Austria (1997); and the Golden Order of Distinction for Merits for the State of Vienna (1994). He was also an Honorary Member of numerous national and international dermatological societies.
On behalf of the EADV:
Prof Carle Paul
Prof Erwin Tschachler