Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Joining forces for immune research

13.08.2018

The initiative “Immunology & Inflammation” unifies efforts in immunological research within the Helmholtz Association. 23 working groups from five Helmholtz Centers are joining forces to address some of the most complex problems in today's immunology in ways that can only be explored in collaboration.

“What we have learned about the immune system and its role in many widespread diseases over the last ten years opens up countless perspectives for research," says Professor Martin Lohse, Scientific Director of the Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine (MDC), the center that coordinates the initiative.


“Our initiative's projects combine the centers’ research topics,” says Professor Pierluigi Nicotera, Vice-President of the Helmholtz Association and Coordinator of the Field of Health Research. “They address key questions such as: How do the immune and nervous systems interact? How does the microenvironment of tissue influence the development of immune cells and what consequences does it have for cancer? How do we use this knowledge for therapies?”

Scientists working in more than 20 projects address these and other questions. Six of those are designed as tandem projects, which are special cooperative ventures involving teams from different centers. Additionally, researchers will meet and exchange knowledge in regularly. The first “Immunology & Inflammation” Conference will take place 24th-26th February 2019 in Berlin, and will host world-leading scientists as speakers.

Curing congenital immune deficiencies with CRISPR-Cas9

One of the six tandem projects, for example, brings together the teams of Professor Mathias Heikenwälder (DKFZ) and Dr. Uta Höpken (MDC) to investigate the influence of inflammatory processes and signaling molecules on the spread of blood cancer. Patients with lymphoma metastases have significantly reduced chances of survival. How and why lymphomas implant themselves in other organs such as the liver or brain is yet unknown.

Another joint project, led by Professor Klaus Rajewsky (MDC) and Professor Ellen Renner (HMGU), explores gene therapy using the CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing toolkit. The aim of this project is to open up an avenue for curing rare congenital immunodeficiencies such as Job´s syndrome, in which only a single gene is mutated.

A total of 23 working groups from five Helmholtz Centers are participating in this initiative, headed by Professor Klaus Rajewsky and Professor Michela Di Virgilio (MDC). They say: “The centers have a broad repertoire of state-of-the-art technologies and expertise. Our joint initiative provides a strong impulse to their work, both in terms of basic research and the development of new therapies.”

Organization and financing

The initiative brings together immunological research distributed among five centers of the Helmholtz Association in the research field health in a common structure. The involved Helmholtz Centers are:

Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine in the Helmholtz Association (MDC), Berlin (coordinating center),
German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Heidelberg,
German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE), Bonn,
Helmholtz Zentrum München (HMGU), Munich, and
Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research (HZI), Braunschweig.

The three-year initiative started in November 2017, and it is the nucleus for a long-term research program that will position the Helmholtz Association internationally as a major player in application-oriented immunology research.

The Helmholtz Association is supporting the initiative through the Initiative and Networking Fund (Zukunftsthemen) with five million euros. The individual centers contribute the same amount from their own budget.

Wissenschaftliche Ansprechpartner:

Marta González Gómez
Project Coordinator “Immunologie & Inflammation”
Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine in the Helmholtz Association (MDC)
Marta.GonzalezGomez@mdc-berlin.de
+49 30 9406-4268

Professor Michela Di Virgilio
Project leader “Immunologie & Inflammation”
Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine in the Helmholtz Association (MDC)
Michela.DiVirgilio@mdc-berlin.de

Professor Klaus Rajewsky
Project Leader “Immunologie & Inflammation”
Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine in the Helmholtz Association (MDC)
Klaus.Rajewsky@mdc-berlin.de

Weitere Informationen:

https://www.mdc-berlin.de/immunology – Website “Immunology & Inflammation”, including a list of participating Helmholtz Research Centers and more detailed descriptions

Annette Tuffs | Max-Delbrück-Centrum für Molekulare Medizin in der Helmholtz-Gemeinschaft
Further information:
http://www.mdc-berlin.de/

More articles from Life Sciences:

nachricht A one-way street for salt
21.09.2018 | Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg

nachricht Nerve cells in the human brain can “count”
21.09.2018 | Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn

All articles from Life Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Scientists present new observations to understand the phase transition in quantum chromodynamics

The building blocks of matter in our universe were formed in the first 10 microseconds of its existence, according to the currently accepted scientific picture. After the Big Bang about 13.7 billion years ago, matter consisted mainly of quarks and gluons, two types of elementary particles whose interactions are governed by quantum chromodynamics (QCD), the theory of strong interaction. In the early universe, these particles moved (nearly) freely in a quark-gluon plasma.

This is a joint press release of University Muenster and Heidelberg as well as the GSI Helmholtzzentrum für Schwerionenforschung in Darmstadt.

Then, in a phase transition, they combined and formed hadrons, among them the building blocks of atomic nuclei, protons and neutrons. In the current issue of...

Im Focus: Patented nanostructure for solar cells: Rough optics, smooth surface

Thin-film solar cells made of crystalline silicon are inexpensive and achieve efficiencies of a good 14 percent. However, they could do even better if their shiny surfaces reflected less light. A team led by Prof. Christiane Becker from the Helmholtz-Zentrum Berlin (HZB) has now patented a sophisticated new solution to this problem.

"It is not enough simply to bring more light into the cell," says Christiane Becker. Such surface structures can even ultimately reduce the efficiency by...

Im Focus: New soft coral species discovered in Panama

A study in the journal Bulletin of Marine Science describes a new, blood-red species of octocoral found in Panama. The species in the genus Thesea was discovered in the threatened low-light reef environment on Hannibal Bank, 60 kilometers off mainland Pacific Panama, by researchers at the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama (STRI) and the Centro de Investigación en Ciencias del Mar y Limnología (CIMAR) at the University of Costa Rica.

Scientists established the new species, Thesea dalioi, by comparing its physical traits, such as branch thickness and the bright red colony color, with the...

Im Focus: New devices based on rust could reduce excess heat in computers

Physicists explore long-distance information transmission in antiferromagnetic iron oxide

Scientists have succeeded in observing the first long-distance transfer of information in a magnetic group of materials known as antiferromagnets.

Im Focus: Finding Nemo's genes

An international team of researchers has mapped Nemo's genome

An international team of researchers has mapped Nemo's genome, providing the research community with an invaluable resource to decode the response of fish to...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

One of the world’s most prominent strategic forums for global health held in Berlin in October 2018

03.09.2018 | Event News

4th Intelligent Materials - European Symposium on Intelligent Materials

27.08.2018 | Event News

LaserForum 2018 deals with 3D production of components

17.08.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Fraunhofer ISE with over 60 Contributions at the European PV Solar Energy Conference and Exhibition

21.09.2018 | Trade Fair News

558 million-year-old fat reveals earliest known animal

21.09.2018 | Earth Sciences

Neutrons produce first direct 3D maps of water during cell membrane fusion

21.09.2018 | Health and Medicine

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>