Health and Environment – Pharmaceuticals development

Fraunhofer scientists research pharmaceutical agents for the treatment of diseases such as cancer, allergies, inflammatory and autoimmune conditions, and infections. For the production of pharmaceutical agents used in preclinical and clinical trials, we have at our disposal the most state-of-the-art equipment meeting the specifications of the European Medicines Agency EMEA and the American Food and Drug Administration FDA. Pharmaceutical agents and manufacturing processes are developed in accordance with the rules of the Good Manufacturing Process (GMP).

Gesundheit und Umwelt

Projects

More efficient vaccine production

Using electrons to inactivate viruses

Viral inactivation by means of electron irradiation.
© Photo Fraunhofer IZI

Viral inactivation by means of electron irradiation.

Many vaccines contain viruses that are inactivated to prevent them from harming recipients. This is generally achieved by adding chemicals. Fraunhofer scientists are taking a different approach, using low-energy-electrons to irradiate the pathogens. The advantages of this new method are that it produces no toxic waste and provides a faster and less aggressive way of rendering pathogens inactive.

  • Viruses in many vaccines are inactivated by means of formaldehyde.
  • Scientists at four Fraunhofer Institutes have developed a new method that makes it easier to inactivate pathogens: low-energy electron irradiation.
  • The project is funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
  • more info

Automated plant factory for the production of vaccines

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© Photo Dirk Mahler/Fraunhofer

Molecular farming is an easy, fast, and safe method for producing vaccines and therapeutic proteins in plants. Now a team of Fraunhofer researchers from the USA has built up a Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) compliant plant factory.

European study to shed light on severe asthma

Asthma is a major health problem around the world. Not all types of asthma are the same and current treatments often adopt a uniform approach, meaning that they don’t work well for everybody. The Fraunhofer Institute for Toxicology and Experimental Medicine is part of the Europe-wide project called U-BIOPRED, which will help scientists understand more about severe asthma. The researchers will investigate how severe asthma differs from person to person, with the aim of uncovering more effective treatments in the future.

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Platform for the Identification of ncRNA-Based Diagnostics – RIBOLUTION

In molecular diagnostics the presence or concentration of specific molecules, so-called biomarkers, is used as indicators of disease or the response to a particular form of therapy. Improved early detection therefore enables difficult and costly disease progressions to be avoided.

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Translational medicine and pharmacology

Work undertaken by the Translational Medicine and Pharmacology project group at the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME is concerned with finding new drug ingredients, developing preclinical and clinical models, and clinical research.

The German Center for Lung Research

The German Center for Lung Research (DZL) is an association of the leading university and non-university institutions dedicated to lung research in Germany and including Fraunhofer ITEM.  Using translational research methods, the DZL seeks to jointly develop new approaches for the prevention, diagnosis and therapy of serious lung diseases.

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Clinical Research Center Hannover

The three partners to the CRC Hannover – Fraunhofer ITEM, MHH, and HZI – will be using the center collaboratively to conduct early-phase clinical trials for the development and registration of novel medications and to do patient-oriented research.