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German Gov t Sets Aside 135M Euros for 180 Additional NGRN Projects

NEW YORK, Dec. 7 (GenomeWeb News) - Germany's Federal Ministry for Education and Research has set aside an additional135 million ($181.3 million) to fund more than 180 research projects in the second three-year phase of the interdisciplinary National Genome Research Network, according to a news report.


The NGFN attracted180 million of FMER funding in its first phase. "Headlining projects from the first phase are set to continue," according to the website Research Research.


Research Minister Edelgard Bulmahn said that the new projects will focus on "major diseases," the report said. He added that this second phase would "increase Germany's international competitiveness in the life sciences," according to Research Research.

The first phase helped spur more than 80 patent applications, 1,500 scientific publications, and more than 90 "product ideas" in collaboration with industry, the report said.

The NGFN network of clinical scientists and molecular biologists will concentrate on heart and circulatory diseases, cancer, infectious diseases, environmental epidemiology, and central nervous system diseases. Around 300 research groups from 30 universities are involved in the second phase of NGFN. These include 10 Max Planck institutes, four Helmholtz centers, five Leibniz institutes, nine biotechnology companies, and the European Molecular Biology Laboratory, the report said.

According to Research Research, projects will be divided into three categories: Disease-related genome networks, which will study "causes, prevention, and treatment" of major diseases; systematic-methodological platforms, which will "concentrate on applying technology to human genome research; and explorative projects, which will "develop innovative ideas and new research directions."


The NGFN was created in 2001 to "promote interdisciplinary cooperation between experts studying the genetic basis of disease," the report said.

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