Frankfurt am Main, Germany
Frankfurt am Main, Germany

The Goethe University Frankfurt is a university which was founded in 1914 as a Citizens' University, which means that, while it was a State university of Prussia, it had been founded and financed by the wealthy and active liberal citizenry of Frankfurt am Main, a unique feature in German university history. It was named in 1932 after one of the most famous natives of Frankfurt, the poet and writer Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. Today, the university has 46,000 students, on 4 major campuses within the city.Several Nobel Prize winners have been affiliated with the university, such as Max von Laue. The university is also affiliated with 11 winners of the Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz Prize. Wikipedia.


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Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: SGA-RIA | Phase: FETFLAGSHIP | Award Amount: 89.00M | Year: 2016

Understanding the human brain is one of the greatest scientific challenges of our time. Such an understanding can provide profound insights into our humanity, leading to fundamentally new computing technologies, and transforming the diagnosis and treatment of brain disorders. Modern ICT brings this prospect within reach. The HBP Flagship Initiative (HBP) thus proposes a unique strategy that uses ICT to integrate neuroscience data from around the world, to develop a unified multi-level understanding of the brain and diseases, and ultimately to emulate its computational capabilities. The goal is to catalyze a global collaborative effort. During the HBPs first Specific Grant Agreement (SGA1), the HBP Core Project will outline the basis for building and operating a tightly integrated Research Infrastructure, providing HBP researchers and the scientific Community with unique resources and capabilities. Partnering Projects will enable independent research groups to expand the capabilities of the HBP Platforms, in order to use them to address otherwise intractable problems in neuroscience, computing and medicine in the future. In addition, collaborations with other national, European and international initiatives will create synergies, maximizing returns on research investment. SGA1 covers the detailed steps that will be taken to move the HBP closer to achieving its ambitious Flagship Objectives.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: MSCA-ITN-ETN | Phase: MSCA-ITN-2016 | Award Amount: 3.97M | Year: 2017

MMbio will bridge the classically separate disciplines of Chemistry and Biology by assembling leading experts from academia and non-academic partners (industry, technology transfer & science communication) to bring about systems designed to interfere therapeutically with gene expression in living cells. Expertise in nucleic acid synthesis, its molecular recognition and chemical reactivity is combined with drug delivery, cellular biology and experimental medicine. This project represents a concerted effort to make use of a basic and quantitative understanding of chemical interactions to develop and deliver oligonucleotide molecules of utility for therapy. Our chemical biology approach to this field is ambitious in its breadth and represents a unqiues opportunity to educate young scientists across sectorial and disciplinary barriers. Training will naturally encompass a wide range of skills, requiring a joint effort of chemists and biologists to introduce young researchers in a structured way to and array of research methodologies that no single research grouping could provide. The incorporation of early-stage and later stag ebiotechnology enterprises ensures that commercialisation of methodologies as well as the drug development process is covered in this ITN. We hope that MMBio will train scientists able to understand both the biological problem and the chemistry that holds the possible solution and develop original experimental approaches to stimulate European academic and commercial success in this area.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: SC1-PM-21-2016 | Award Amount: 4.26M | Year: 2017

Screening for vision and hearing disorders in children has shown to be highly effective. EU-directive 16620/11 invites EU-member states to give priority to such screening programmes. Early detection and treatment of a lazy eye (prevalence 3%) prevents lifelong visual impairment. Early detection and treatment of hearing impairment (prevalence 0.15%) prevents delayed speech and language development. Across Europe inequity exists in the provision of childhood vision and hearing screening programmes (VAHSPs). High-Income Countries (HICs) have VAHSPs, but they vary with regard to age and frequency of testing, tests used, uptake, screening professionals, referral pathway and funding. This makes it difficult for healthcare providers and policy makers to decide what VAHSP to implement in Low- to Middle-Income Countries (LMICs) and how. In this study, cost-optimised, evidence-based VAHSPs will be implemented in two LMICs, based on collated evidence from existing VAHSPs in Europe. Data on VAHSPs, demography, administration, general screening, screening professions, uptake and treatment availability will be gathered in an established network of professionals in 41 European countries and used in a disease/health system modelling framework to predict benefits and cost in the most optimal health system, taking regional diversity and organisational and resource requirements into account. Model-developed VAHSPs will be tested in the county of Cluj in Romania for vision, and in three counties in Albania for hearing screening. A generic strategy for implementation will be developed by detailed tracking, and from identified requirements, facilitators and barriers. The decision-analytic modelling framework and the strategy for implementation will be packed into a transferable TOOLKIT that will assist healthcare providers and policy makers worldwide in their decisions to introduce or modify VAHSPs, and increase effectiveness, efficiency and equity of child healthcare.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: RIA | Phase: SC1-PM-09-2016 | Award Amount: 6.20M | Year: 2017

Due to lack of targeted interventions, compliance issues, insufficient effect sizes and a high non-responder rate to currently available interventions, there is an urgent need to develop innovative and new interventions for chronic paediatric neuropsychiatric disorders, such as Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) has been shown to be an innovative, effective and safe alternative treatment approach for neuropsychiatric disorders in adults. Here, for the first time, the effect of tDCS on core neurocognitive and behavioral outcomes will be proven in children and adolescents. First, effect sizes and safety of standard tDCS in the clinical setting targeting core brain regions and disorder specific cognitive tasks will be established by three phase-IIa randomized, double blind, sham-controlled studies in ADHD and ASD. Second, the impact of brain development and age-dependent anatomical / functional features on effects of tDCS will be studied systematically using methods of modern neurophysiology, neuroimaging and electric current modeling. This involves an additional phase-I clinical trial. Third, mechanisms of tDCS on brain function will be studied, and biomarkers will be developed in order to predict individual response to standard and individualized stimulation protocols. Finally, the applicability of tDCS in children and adolescents will be improved by developing an innovative personalized home-based treatment option in combination with a telemental health service, which will be tested by a fifth, phase-IIa clinical trial. Throughout the entire project, ethical concerns of the target population will be addressed. This project opens a new avenue for the application of tDCS as an alternative treatment for a great number of chronic neuropsychiatric disorders in children and adolescents and will allow flexible integration of tDCS in the daily routine of families.


Grant
Agency: European Commission | Branch: H2020 | Program: CSA | Phase: INFRADEV-03-2016-2017 | Award Amount: 3.95M | Year: 2017

Instruct-Ultra aims to advance the scope and efficiency of implementation of Instruct and consolidate the foundations for long-term sustainability. This will be achieved through specific objectives: expand Instruct membership to new Member States and increase global links; engage new user communities; improve efficiencies in service delivery; improve data capture and management; adjust the scale and reliability of the infrastructure. Instruct-Ultra will deliver these alongside the transition to ERIC legal status and rapid developments in, and increased demand for, integrated structural biology infrastructure. These advances in the scale and speed of delivery will earn further trust within the life science community. One focus will to expand membership to Eastern European states and EFTA countries, integrating their structural biology communities into Instruct and providing new opportunities to support research excellence and raise standards. Opportunities for engaging with industrialised and developing countries outside the ERA will build on existing cooperative work between Instruct and Asian, African and South American countries to establish strong bilateral programmes of benefit to both parties, giving Instruct better engagement in emerging global challenges and positioning Instruct as a trusted global resource for high quality structural biology services. Starting from baseline operations four years ago Instruct has now identified key areas of service which should be expanded, new potential user groups, and opportunities for more reliable, efficient and sometimes remotely used workflows. Instruct-Ultra will therefore test new modes of access and pilot new service methods in high demand areas to accelerate access for more users. Instruct-Ultra will reinforce Instruct operations by updating and expanding the business plan and structural biology roadmap, whilst improving the interface with academia and industry as a strategy to sustainability.

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