Using genetic research to treat inflammatory diseases Vienna centre of excellence in biomedicine harnesses basic research

for Dermatology), the Vienna University of Agriculture, Forestry and Renewable Natural Resources (Centre for Ultrastructure Research), well-known pharmaceutical companies (Baxter and the Novartis Research Institute), and dynamic start-up companies (Biomax Informatics, Nanosearch, Polymun Scientific and Technoclone). The joint projects receive financial support from the Austrian Governments Kplus programme, administered by the Technologie Impulse Gesellschaft (TIG), and Vienna City Council which has invested directly in BMT.

"Common structures not only permit the efficient use of research resources but also generate lively exchanges of ideas and expertise, said BMT managing director Gudrun Baumann. "The centres unique concept fills a much criticised gap in the Austrian research sector. Rapid technology transfers and patent protection ensure that research results quickly find their way into treatments for patients.

In terms of quality of their scientific output, the university institutes that have joined forces to conduct research through BMT are among the Austrian "top five institutions. "But that by itself does not cure any patient, noted BMT scientific director Professor Bernd R. Binder who heads the Institute of Vascular Biology and Thrombosis Research. "Only research aiming for applicable results can translate breakthroughs in basic research rapidly into effective therapies.

This approach is reflected in the role played by the participating starts-ups with academic origins. These include Munich based Biomax Informatics, the partner that contributes bioinformatics know-how an increasingly important factor in genetic research. Biomax CEO Dr. Klaus Heumann said: "The experience of the dynamic biotech environment in Vienna is invaluable to us. For instance, collaborating with BMTs working groups is helping us develop a new chip for therapies of inflammatory disease.

A similar view came from Prof. Hans Peter Schwarz, Vice President Sc

Contact: Gudrun Baumann
PR&D Public Relations for Research & Development

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