Helmholtz Zentrum München boosts excellence in research

On September 3, the DZD partner Helmholtz Zentrum München celebrated two milestones. Themed “Building the Future of Health” the inauguration of the Helmholtz Diabetes Center and the ground-breaking ceremony for the Helmholtz Pioneer Campus – the future talent incubator for bioengineering – took place. With state-of-the-art infrastructure and a large number of open collaboration zones including laboratories, the new buildings will significantly promote interdisciplinary research. The ceremony was held in the presence of the Bavarian Prime Minister Dr. Markus Söder, the Chairman of the Supervisory Board MinDir'in Prof. Dr. Veronika von Messling and the Vice President of the Health Department of the Helmholtz Association Prof. Dr. Dirk Heinz.

(left to right): Kerstin Günther, Technical Director Helmholtz Zentrum München, Bavarian Prime Minister Dr. Markus Söder and Prof. Matthias Tschöp, CEO Helmholtz Zentrum München. © Helmholtz Zentrum München /M.Balk

With the Diabetes Center and the Pioneer Campus, Helmholtz Zentrum München continues to realize its vision for tomorrow's health research and bridges the gap between top international research and research translation. The two new facilities serve as models for interdisciplinary collaboration and use local synergies to solve global health issues.

Prime Minister Dr. Markus Söder commented in his speech: “Health research is one of the most important challenges of the future. This center, in particular the diabetes research, is a tremendous opportunity for many people to improve their lives. Only with research and science we can shape our future and it is the government's responsibility to create the necessary space. The State of Bavaria must therefore invest to a greater extent in education and research, as we want to attract the best and brightest minds in the world. Helmholtz Zentrum München is one of the most important and strongest research centers in this country. We are proud to call Bavaria its home and look forward to continued success in excellence in research”.

Inauguration of the Helmholtz Diabetes Center
The Helmholtz Diabetes Center was successfully built in autumn 2018 and has now been officially inaugurated. It combines basic research units with clinical approaches and capacities for drug screening. A team of internationally renowned scientists conducts interdisciplinary research for a world without diabetes. With the Helmholtz Diabetes Center, Munich has developed into Europe's largest location focusing on diabetes research type 2 diabetes and obesity as well as the early detection and elimination of type 1 diabetes.

Ground-breaking ceremony for the Helmholtz Pioneer Campus
The ground-breaking ceremony is the first step for the creation of the Pioneer Campus. The campus will be home to multidisciplinary teams consisting of engineers, bio-informaticians, biologists, physicians, chemists and physicists working together to find sustainable solutions for the future of medicine. Starting at the end of 2022, the research teams will move into the new building for a period of five to seven years. In order to stimulate innovation with new ideas, the teams will rotate after this period. The building itself can be quickly adapted to changing scientific and technological requirements. With this new concept, the Pioneer Campus is a magnet for new talent worldwide.

No boundaries for accelerated research
“In order to remain competitive in the race against environment-related diseases such as diabetes, asthma, allergies or lung diseases, we need the most innovative ideas and must bundle and use multiple disciplines and new technologies such as artificial intelligence even more effectively”, emphasized Prof. Dr. med. Dr. h.c. Matthias H. Tschöp, Scientific Director of Helmholtz Zentrum München, in his speech. “The Helmholtz Pioneer Campus is a unique answer to these requirements in Europe. It offers space for highly talented early career researchers, whose vision will repeatedly transcend the boundaries of individual disciplines and thus provide transformative stimuli for research at this center. This will not only continue to benefit our internationally leading diabetes research, but also the scientific ecosystem of Munich and the Helmholtz Association as a whole. At Helmholtz Zentrum München, we are uniquely positioned to create sustainable solutions for the personalized health of the future”.