DFG establishes three new clinical research units

December 10, 2004

To continue the improvement of the clinical research infrastructure in Germany the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (German Research Foundation, DFG) is establishing three new Clinical Research Units. With the decision by the Grants Committee on General Research Support on 3 December 2004 the DFG is now funding a total of 25 Units at 15 German universities. The objective of the programme is to act as an instrument for developing research oriented structures, with the ultimate goal being the institutionalisation of scientific clinical research in Germany. To this end the programme promotes particularly distinguished groups of scientists and innovative research projects at medical faculties. The establishment of a Clinical Research Unit by the DFG is contingent on the university providing half of the funding and establishing a research professorship to head the unit. The funding is intended to last for six years and to support young researchers in particular. In addition, the Research Units are expected to contribute towards enhancing the profile of the participating medical faculties and universities.

The three new units in detail:

Gastrointestinal tumours are responsible for about a quarter of deaths resulting from cancer, and thus constitute a significant clinical problem. The aim of the Clinical Research Unit "Gastrointestinal Tumours: From the Molecular Concept to Clinical Application" at the Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich is to develop novel therapeutic approaches for treating patients with advanced tumours in the gastrointestinal tract. They aim to use targeted analysis to study the molecular fundamentals of tumour biology.

A new Clinical Research Unit is being established at the Medical Faculty of the University of Lübeck to study glucose regulation in the brain. The researchers involved in the Unit "Selfish Brain: Brain Glucose and the Metabolic Syndrome" will be investigating a new model. They are working on the assumption that the body's energy balance is centrally regulated by the brain, and that it is not the serum glucose concentration which governs the metabolism.

Brain glucose regulation is critical for higher organisms since a lack of glucose (neuroglycopenia) can result in dysfunction and can even be fatal.

Hepatitis C infection is still a serious health problem. More than 170 million people worldwide, and 500,000 in Germany alone, are infected with this virus. The success rate of the therapeutic methods available to date is only around 50 to 60 percent. The Clinical Research Unit "Mechanisms of Resistance Development and Optimisation of Antiviral Strategies for Hepatitis C Virus Infection Incorporating Integrative Models of Biomathematics and Biocomputing" being established at the Saarland University Hospital will characterise resistance mechanisms of existing and new antiviral therapies. The aim is to develop individualised therapies and new types of therapy for treating this disease. The interdisciplinary approach of the research unit encompasses both clinical and immunological as well as biomathematical and pharmacological problems.
-end-
Further information
Further information on Clinical Research Units and the respective contacts are available online at http://www.dfg.de/en/research_funding/coordinated_programmes/clinical_research_units/.

Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft

Related Brain Articles from Brightsurf:

Glioblastoma nanomedicine crosses into brain in mice, eradicates recurring brain cancer
A new synthetic protein nanoparticle capable of slipping past the nearly impermeable blood-brain barrier in mice could deliver cancer-killing drugs directly to malignant brain tumors, new research from the University of Michigan shows.

Children with asymptomatic brain bleeds as newborns show normal brain development at age 2
A study by UNC researchers finds that neurodevelopmental scores and gray matter volumes at age two years did not differ between children who had MRI-confirmed asymptomatic subdural hemorrhages when they were neonates, compared to children with no history of subdural hemorrhage.

New model of human brain 'conversations' could inform research on brain disease, cognition
A team of Indiana University neuroscientists has built a new model of human brain networks that sheds light on how the brain functions.

Human brain size gene triggers bigger brain in monkeys
Dresden and Japanese researchers show that a human-specific gene causes a larger neocortex in the common marmoset, a non-human primate.

Unique insight into development of the human brain: Model of the early embryonic brain
Stem cell researchers from the University of Copenhagen have designed a model of an early embryonic brain.

An optical brain-to-brain interface supports information exchange for locomotion control
Chinese researchers established an optical BtBI that supports rapid information transmission for precise locomotion control, thus providing a proof-of-principle demonstration of fast BtBI for real-time behavioral control.

Transplanting human nerve cells into a mouse brain reveals how they wire into brain circuits
A team of researchers led by Pierre Vanderhaeghen and Vincent Bonin (VIB-KU Leuven, Université libre de Bruxelles and NERF) showed how human nerve cells can develop at their own pace, and form highly precise connections with the surrounding mouse brain cells.

Brain scans reveal how the human brain compensates when one hemisphere is removed
Researchers studying six adults who had one of their brain hemispheres removed during childhood to reduce epileptic seizures found that the remaining half of the brain formed unusually strong connections between different functional brain networks, which potentially help the body to function as if the brain were intact.

Alcohol byproduct contributes to brain chemistry changes in specific brain regions
Study of mouse models provides clear implications for new targets to treat alcohol use disorder and fetal alcohol syndrome.

Scientists predict the areas of the brain to stimulate transitions between different brain states
Using a computer model of the brain, Gustavo Deco, director of the Center for Brain and Cognition, and Josephine Cruzat, a member of his team, together with a group of international collaborators, have developed an innovative method published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on Sept.

Read More: Brain News and Brain Current Events
Brightsurf.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com.