MedUni Vienna coordinates project on the resilience of the developing brain

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Further funding has been awarded under the federal government’s excellent=austria excellence initiative to expand cutting-edge research at universities and non-university research institutions. Five "Emerging Fields" will launch cooperative research projects across 14 locations on topics with the highest innovation potential. The first five consortia between Vienna and Innsbruck will receive a total of 31 million euros in funding from the FWF over the next five years. One of these consortia is being coordinated by MedUni Vienna.

The FWF’s Scientific Advisory Board selected five Emerging Fields following a multi-stage decision-making process including a jury hearing. The selection was based on the recommendations of the international jury, which assessed the innovation potential and scientific excellence on the basis of global peer reviews. Austria’s new Emerging Fields will deepen basic research on research issues with particular innovative potential and risk appetite: global security of supply, tumor therapies, evolutionary research, brain research and new approaches at the interface of mathematics and relativity. The funding can be used to create attractive conditions for close collaboration at the participating institutions. Researchers are given the freedom to pursue promising approaches and riskier ideas.

Emerging Field "Brain Resilience"

Strengthening the resilience of the brain - coordinated by MedUni Vienna
The mammalian brain is formed by highly complex developmental processes that are controlled by thousands of genes and their interaction with the prenatal environment. Mutations in the underlying genes can predispose to various neurodevelopmental disorders. However, many people with a genetic predisposition to neurodevelopmental disorders live healthy lives. This project aims to unravel the molecular processes by which a favorable prenatal environment can reverse a genetic predisposition to neurodevelopmental disorders and enable the development of a healthy brain by strengthening brain resilience.
"The approach in this project is completely novel, as we want to explore the natural mechanisms of brain resilience to positively influence the expression of genetically determined alteration of brain function and behavior," says Igor Adameyko, coordinator, about the goals of the Emerging Field.

Consortium members and research sites:

  • Igor Igorevich Adameyko (Coordinator, Medical University of Vienna)
  • Christoph Bock (CeMM - Research Center for Molecular Medicine, Austrian Academy of Sciences and Medical University of Vienna)
  • Jürgen A. Knoblich (IMBA - Institute of Molecular Biotechnology, Austrian Academy of Sciences, and MedUni Vienna)
  • Gaia Novarino (Institute of Science and Technology Austria (ISTA)
  • Daniela Pollak (Medical University of Vienna
  • Roman A. Romanov (Medical University of Vienna)

FWF funding volume: 6.8 million euros

Other Emerging Fields projects in which MedUni Vienna researchers are involved:

Stefan Thurner (MedUni Vienna, Complexity Science Hub) in the Emerging Field "REMASS: Resilience and Malleability of Social Metabolism - "Making global supply chains crisis-proof and sustainable" Coordination University of Vienna
Johannes Huppa (MedUni Vienna) in the Emerging Field "Devising Advanced TCR-T cells to eradicate OsteoSarcoma"- Customized immune cells for cancer therapy
Coordination IMP - Research Institute of Molecular Pathology