Current Issue SYNERGIE: Immune System – Our Health Network

The immune system is the focus of the new issue of the DZG magazine SYNERGIE. The magazine reports on how this complex and intricate network protects us from disease and what happens when it does not function properly or turns against our own body.


Research for health – under this motto, the German Centers for Health Research (DZG) report on current research highlights of their members in the magazine SYNERGIE. In the cover story of this issue, you can learn more about how the immune system works and how human organs and vascular systems work together to ward off pathogens. For more information (in German) see:


Other topics are:


#DIABETES RESEARCH: The blue helmet soldiers of the immune system
In people with type 1 diabetes, misdirected immune cells attack their own bodies. In an interview, Professor Carolin Daniel, immunologist at the German Center for Diabetes Research (DZD), reports on why the immune system gets derailed here and how it can be brought back into balance.



#LUNG RESEARCH: A messenger substance to accelerate the repair of damaged lungs
Acute respiratory distress can have other causes than COVID-19. At the DZL, Professor Susanne Herold is working on an inhalation therapy.

#CANCER RESEARCH: New hope against cancer
Targeted immunotherapy is designed to help the body recognize cancer cells as "foreign" again and fight them. The DKTK is pursuing innovative approaches.

#INFECTION RESEARCH: No vaccine, but a cure?
Research on HIV and AIDS has been going on for 40 years. A vaccine is not yet in sight, but the search for it continues at the DZIF.

#CARDIOVASCULAR RESEARCH: Against stress in the vessels
DZHK researchers are investigating the role of the innate immune system in atherosclerosis.

#NEURONAL RESEARCH: The enemy in one's own body
In autoimmune encephalopathies, misdirected antibodies attack the brain. The DZNE is researching therapies.


In this microscope image, the Tregs are colored red. DZD immunologist Carolin Daniel focuses her scientific work on regulatory T cells. © SYNERGY / DZG

Research for health – under this motto, the German Centers for Health Research (DZG) report twice a year on projects and achievements in translational research in the DZG magazine SYNERGIE. The magazine for health research shows how interdisciplinary and networked research can help people achieve better health. The magazine is published in a print and an online version (

The German Centers for Health Research (DZG)
The goal of the German Centers for Health Research is translational research: the accelerated development of medical innovations. On the initiative of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, six centers were founded between 2009 and 2011 to better understand the causes of widespread diseases and to transfer research results from the laboratory to practice more quickly. The centers are dedicated to the following diseases: Cancer (DKTK), neurodegenerative diseases (DZNE), infectious diseases (DZIF), diabetes (DZD), lung diseases (DZL) and cardiovascular diseases (DZHK).
To this end, a total of 36 medical faculties and university hospitals work together with around 90 non-university institutes of the Helmholtz Association, the Leibniz Association, the Max Planck Society, the Fraunhofer Society and departmental research institutes of the federal government. Furthermore, there are collaborations with scientists in Germany and internationally.