FBRI and Fraunhofer IME sign joint Research Agreement with Japanese Pharma Company

Translational Medicine /

German Fraunhofer IME and Japanese Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation intensify their scientific co-operation in regenerative medicine with industrial partner.

HAMBURG/ KOBE. As part of their long-term co-operation the Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation in Kobe (FBRI), Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME in Hamburg (Fraunhofer IME) and a Japanese pharmaceutical company have concluded a Joint Research Agreement on Drug Discovery for Dementia.

The treatment of dementia is, especially in Japan and Germany with its aging populations, a challenge for the societies. Both research organizations are working on regenerative medicine using a variety of technologies. This Research Agreement is based on the work of the Taguchi lab at FBRI, which has established a novel vascularization / activation method. The ScreeningPort lab at Fraunhofer IME is utilizing this technology and conducts High-Throughput-Screening and small molecule drug discovery for dementia. The contract period will be 3 years from July 2020. Details of this trilateral contract will not be disclosed.

Dr. Akihiko Taguchi, professor at the Institute of Biomedical Research and Innovation, Department of Regenerative Medicine Research, is the principal researcher and corresponding author of recent dementia research papers and comments “our joint publications in 2019 and 2020, exchange of visiting scientists and the stem cell seminar held in 2019 at Kobe have been important to reach this Research Agreement”.

Prof. Dr. Carsten Claussen, Head of the Hamburg site of Fraunhofer IME says “this agreement reflects our long-term commitment to an important international cooperation which is key to translating basic research into the clinic. We have already made progress during a visiting scientist exchange where some of the output has resulted in three research publications”.

The mutual collaboration was started in 2016 under the promotion of the Biomedical Cluster under Regional Industry Tie-Up project supported by Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) together with the Cluster Management organization Life Science Nord (LSN). Within the BMBF Funding Programme to establish joint research centres with partners in the Asia-Pacific Research Area (APRA), this initiative has been funded as “German-Japanese Center for Collaborative Research in Neuroscience (C-CNS)”. Both Cluster management organizations will continue to explore further co-operation between the North German region and City of Kobe.


About the Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation at Kobe FBRI

The Foundation for Biomedical Research and Innovation at Kobe FBRI (President Tasuku Honjo, M.D.PhD) is charged with general coordinating functions to promote and facilitate collaboration and integration among industrial, governmental, academic, and medical sectors; to support R&D leading to advances in healthcare and their clinical application; and to work toward the construction of next-generation healthcare systems. Through these activities, the FBRI expects to contribute to the creation of innovative healthcare technologies and the formation and accumulation of healthcare-related industries in Kobe. The FBRI’s ultimate goals are to revitalize Kobe’s economy, enhance local residents’ wellbeing, and contribute to the international community.


About the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME

The Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME, with over 530 employees at its six sites in Schmallenberg, Aachen, Gießen, Münster, Frankfurt/Main and Hamburg conducts research in the field of applied life sciences from a molecular level to entire ecosystems, in the areas of pharmacy, medicine, chemistry, agriculture, as well as environmental and consumer protection. Our mission is the development and use of novel technologies for diagnosis and therapy of human and animal diseases as well as the protection of crop plants and food sources.

Fraunhofer IME ScreeningPort in Hamburg contributes with its expertise in assay development and drug discovery.