First Max Planck Partner Institute in China

An agreement on the establishment of a "MPG/CAS Partner Institute for Computational Biology" was signed by the President of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Prof. Lu Yongxiang, and the President of the Max Planck Society for the Advancement of Science (MPG), Prof. Peter Gruss, on 8 November 2004 in Berlin during the festivities marking the 30th anniversary of their cooperation. The Partner Institute is to be set up on the campus of the Shanghai Institutes of Biological Sciences (SIBS) of the CAS in Shanghai, a multi- and interdisciplinary research center in the life sciences. During the five-year start- up phase the CAS will assume two thirds of the required costs while project funding from the Federal Ministry for Education and Research will account for the remaining one-third totaling 2.5 million euros. The new research institute will not only complement the wide range of experimental topics at the SIBS in Shanghai, but also a number of ongoing projects at Max Planck Institutes in Germany through main components in theoretical biology.

The new Partner Institute will enrich the experimental activities of both organizations in the field of molecular biology and deal primarily with theoretical aspects in the biosciences that come under the term "Computational Biology". The development of theoretical methods and the modeling of systems in molecular biology make major contributions to understanding experimental findings and predicting test results. Reproducing complex processes in molecular networks and cell systems with the help of computer aided calculation methods will be of immediate interest. Simulating complex cellular processes can lead to a deeper understanding of processes in human organs and ultimately to the development of new medications.

The Partner Institute is going to work in a number of disciplines because only the combination of various disciplines in the life science, physics, and computer sciences will enable a better unders

Contact: Dr. Barbara Spielmann

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