Metabolic disorders such as diabetes and obesity have been on the rise in recent decades, increasing the risk of vascular diseases for patients. Furthermore, these diseases can significantly impair the quality of life and life expectancy of those affected. These so-called "lifestyle diseases" are among the greatest challenges of our time for our society and health. The Helmholtz Institute for Metabolic, Obesity and Vascular Research (HI-MAG) addresses precisely these challenges. Helmholtz Munich established the institute five years ago in collaboration with the Medical Faculty of the University of Leipzig and the University of Leipzig Medical Center. HI-MAG brings together scientists from basic and clinical research to further develop new approaches for the treatment of obesity, metabolic, and vascular diseases and to facilitate access for patients.
With guests from politics and science, HI-MAG celebrated its 5th anniversary on June 12, 2023, in Leipzig with a symposium. More than 80 invited guests received insights about achievements during the institute's initial years and about future goals from the staff working at HI-MAG. Since its establishment, researchers at the institute have, for instance, identified a new risk gene for childhood obesity, and elucidated mechanisms for the impairment of organ health in the liver, adipose tissue, and vessels caused by a poor diet. Additionally, state-of-the-art medications for the treatment of obesity and type-2 diabetes, developed in part through the basic research at Helmholtz Munich, are currently being tested in clinical trials, to name just a few of the outstanding accomplishments.
Despite the spatial separation between Leipzig and Munich, the collaboration could not be closer. HI-MAG serves as the link between basic research at Helmholtz Munich and clinical application at the University of Leipzig Medical Center, enabling the rapid transfer of the latest findings to the patient. Following the symposium, HI-MAG opened its doors to the guests, providing a more detailed insight into the institute’s current clinical and translational projects through its own study clinic and laboratories, and facilitating conversations with the HI-MAG scientists.
Find out more about the Bioengeenering cooperation between Helmholtz Munich and the University of Leipzig at the Helmholtz Pioneer Campus
Check out some outstanding research results from HI-MAG: