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German Research Foundation Funds Three Further Collaborative Research Centers at Freie Universität Berlin

Freie Universität Now Lead University for Nine Collaborative Research Centers

№ 322/2009 from Nov 18, 2009

Freie Universität is the lead university for the newly approved Collaborative Research Center (SFB) "Ernährung, intestinale Mikrobiota und Wirtsinteraktionen beim Schwein" (Nutrition, Intestinal Microbiota, and Host Interactions in Swine). Freie Universität also participates in the newly approved SFB "Molekulare Organisation der zellulären Kommunikation im Immunsystem" (Molecular Organization of Cellular Communication in the Immune System). The lead university is Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg. Extended funding has been approved for the SFB "Governance in Areas of Limited Statehood" hosted by Freie Universität.

The president of Freie Universität, Prof. Dr. Dieter Lenzen, was pleased about the new funding commitments as the decisions testify to the research strength and diversity of Freie Universität. Including the new funding, Freie Universität is the lead university for nine SFBs and participates in ten others. Additionally, the university is involved in ten SFBs through Charité – University Medicine Berlin.

The new SFBs will initially be funded for four years. As of 2010 the German Research Foundation will be funding a total of 244 Collaborative Research Centers.

More details about the newly approved and extended Collaborative Research Centers:

As part of the newly approved SFB 852 "Nutrition, Intestinal Microbiota, and Host Interactions in Swine" researchers of the Department of Veterinary Medicine of Freie Universität will be investigating the influence of dietary factors on intestinal function and animal health. The aim is to better treat or prevent swine diseases that have health political or economic relevance, and in particular, to achieve greater efficiency in animal husbandry without antibiotics. This research has the potential to open up many perspectives for animal nutrition, health, and food safety. A long-term goal is the potential transferability of the results to humans.

The spokesperson is Professor Dr. Jürgen Zentek. The other participating institutions include Charité – University Medicine Berlin (operated jointly by Freie Universität and Humboldt-Universität), Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, and Technische Universität Berlin. Other partners are the German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment, Berlin, and the German Institute of Human Nutrition, Potsdam-Rehbrücke.

Further information and interview requests:

Professor Dr. Jürgen Zentek, Institute of Animal Nutrition, Freie Universität Berlin

Tel.: +49 (0)30 / 838-52256, Email: 

Precisely controlled communication processes within and between cells are essential for the functioning of the whole organism as well as the various organ systems. Understanding these processes of communication in physiological and pathological immune systems at the molecular level, is the goal of the SFB 854 "Molecular Organization of Cellular Communication in the Immune System." Researchers at the University of Magdeburg want to gain deeper insights into the molecular regulation of immune processes, simultaneously connecting neurobiology and immunology. The topic of signal transduction in cells of the immune system will be considered in this SFB from a new angle, using findings from well-studied signal transduction processes in the nervous system.

The spokesperson is Professor Dr. Burkhart Schraven of the University of Magdeburg. The co-proposer is Freie Universität Berlin. The Helmholtz Center for Infection Research, Braunschweig, and the Leibniz Institute for Neurobiology, Magdeburg, are also involved.

The social scientists working in the SFB 700 "Governance in Areas of Limited Statehood: New Modes of Governance?" that has just been approved for an extended funding period until 2013 will continue their research on theoretical and conceptual, empirical, analytical, and normative implications of the transfer of governance concepts to areas of limited statehood. The new research foci will be primarily the scientific appropriation and defense processes that occur in so-called governance transfers as well as the material foundations of governance. SFB 700 will be reinforced by five new projects: Governance in the Middle East (Prof. Dr. Cilja Harders), Governance in the Early Middle Ages (Prof. Dr. Stefan Esders), Governance Transfers and Security (Dr. Ursula Schröder), Humanitarian Governance (Prof. Dr. Heike Krieger), and Governance of Intellectual Property Rights (Prof. Dr. Susanne Lütz).

The spokespersons are Prof. Dr. Thomas Risse and Prof. Dr. Ursula Lehmkuhl of Freie Universität Berlin. The other participating universities are the University of Potsdam, the University of Cologne, and the Hertie School of Governance, Berlin. Other participating research institutions are the German Institute for International and Security Affairs, Berlin, and the Social Science Research Center Berlin.

Further information and interview requests:

Dr. Lars Brozus, Tel.: +49 (0)30-838-58501, Email: 

Online information about the SFBs: