The grant shall be used to accelerate the search for active agents to treat diseases that are caused by protein misfolding. These include Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. The grant amount will be matched by the MDC, a member institution of the Helmholtz Association, which means that the total funding for the research project will be EUR 1.35 million.
The grant shall be used to develop a standardized screening platform for the identification of active agents that can be utilized by the pharmaceutical industry. The project is intended to result in the establishment of a spin-off company. The key element will be a system to identify active agents that impact protein aggregates that are toxic for brain cells. Protein aggregation plays a significant role in common neurological diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s or the rare Huntington’s disease.
In the pathogenesis of these diseases, a misfolding of specific proteins occurs in the brain cells, leading to an aggregation of harmful structures that cannot be disposed of. This increasingly leads to degeneration of the brain cells in the affected individuals and subsequently – depending on the protein and the disease – to memory loss, movement disorders, psychosis and dementia. Altogether, about 40 diseases can be attributed to protein misfolding, including diabetes mellitus.
The research group of Professor Wanker has been studying protein misfolding for over ten years and has developed innovative concepts and methods to test active agents for their capacity to intervene in protein misfolding processes. One of the group’s discoveries is that epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), a green tea extract, binds to toxic misfolded products and modulates these into nontoxic structures.
The methods hitherto used by the group shall now be incorporated into a technology platform to test larger libraries of potential active agents. This will include a high-throughput robotic system developed by the researchers for investigating interactions among proteins but also between proteins and other substances. In 2008 they received the Erwin Schrödinger Prize for research in this area.
The new Helmholtz Validation Fund, according to the Helmholtz Association announcement, will also fund a project of the Helmholtz Center Dresden-Rossendorf and the Research Center Jülich. The aim of this project is to improve imaging techniques for drug development to treat Alzheimer’s.
Until 2015 the Initiative and Networking Fund of the Helmholtz Association has allocated a total of EUR 26 million to the Helmholtz Validation Fund to fund projects at Helmholtz centers. Including the matching funds from the centers, more than EUR 50 million will be available for technology transfer projects.Contact:
Barbara Bachtler | Max-Delbrück-Centrum
Scientists learn more about how gene linked to autism affects brain
19.06.2018 | Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center
Overdosing on Calcium
19.06.2018 | Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg im Breisgau
Scientists from the University of Freiburg and the University of Basel identified a master regulator for bone regeneration. Prasad Shastri, Professor of...
Moving into its fourth decade, AchemAsia is setting out for new horizons: The International Expo and Innovation Forum for Sustainable Chemical Production will take place from 21-23 May 2019 in Shanghai, China. With an updated event profile, the eleventh edition focusses on topics that are especially relevant for the Chinese process industry, putting a strong emphasis on sustainability and innovation.
Founded in 1989 as a spin-off of ACHEMA to cater to the needs of China’s then developing industry, AchemAsia has since grown into a platform where the latest...
The BMBF-funded OWICELLS project was successfully completed with a final presentation at the BMW plant in Munich. The presentation demonstrated a Li-Fi communication with a mobile robot, while the robot carried out usual production processes (welding, moving and testing parts) in a 5x5m² production cell. The robust, optical wireless transmission is based on spatial diversity; in other words, data is sent and received simultaneously by several LEDs and several photodiodes. The system can transmit data at more than 100 Mbit/s and five milliseconds latency.
Modern production technologies in the automobile industry must become more flexible in order to fulfil individual customer requirements.
An international team of scientists has discovered a new way to transfer image information through multimodal fibers with almost no distortion - even if the fiber is bent. The results of the study, to which scientist from the Leibniz-Institute of Photonic Technology Jena (Leibniz IPHT) contributed, were published on 6thJune in the highly-cited journal Physical Review Letters.
Endoscopes allow doctors to see into a patient’s body like through a keyhole. Typically, the images are transmitted via a bundle of several hundreds of optical...
Light detection and control lies at the heart of many modern device applications, such as smartphone cameras. Using graphene as a light-sensitive material for...
13.06.2018 | Event News
08.06.2018 | Event News
05.06.2018 | Event News
19.06.2018 | Physics and Astronomy
19.06.2018 | Life Sciences
19.06.2018 | Physics and Astronomy