A Push for Neuroscience in the Munich Region

09/10/2009 : 16:22

Federal Minister of Education and Research Mrs. Annette Schavan at the press conference for the inauguration ceremony with Prof. Brandt. copyright: LMU

CoTeSys combines leading-edge research centers in the Munich region. Whenever one of these centers is awarded with additional funding for projects and initiatives related to CoTeSys, we see this as another stepping stone to advance the competencies of the Munich region, from which scientists, but more importantly, society in large will take profit.

We congratulate Prof. Thomas Brandt, Director of the Institute for Clinical Neurosciences at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University and CoTeSys Principal Investigator, for having been awarded the establishment of an Integrated Center for Research and Treatment of Vertigo, Balance and Ocular Motor Disorders IFBLMU. In a recent celebration, Federal Minister of Education and Research Annette Schavan came to Munich to inaugurate this new Center (photo) and to introduce Thomas Brandt as its Director. From November on, the IFBLMU will receive 25 Million Euros over the next 5 years. Munich thus has become the site of a unique concentration of leading experts on vertigo, balance and ocular motor disorders, both in the clinical and basic sciences.

Vertigo is one of the most common complaints in medicine. Despite its high prevalence, patients with vertigo generally receive either inappropriate or inadequate treatment. This deplorable situation is internationally well known and its causes are multiple: insufficient interdisciplinary cooperation, no standardized diagnostics and therapy, the failure to translate findings of basic science into clinical applications and the scarcity of clinical multicenter studies. The IFBLMU will constitute a suitable tool with which these structural, clinical, and scientific deficits can be overcome.

Besides focusing on these deficits, IFBLMU will promote innovative topics of molecular functional and structural imaging, experimental and clinical pharmacotherapy, clinical research of vertigo and balance disorders, mathematical modeling, interaction between biological and technical systems (robotics) and research on functionality and the quality of life. Particularly with regard to last point the potential for synergies between the two research initiatives IFBLMU and CoTeSys are obvious. “Especially in the field of interaction between biological and technical systems, co-operation with CoTeSys will increase our competence and vice-versa,” explains Thomas Brandt.

We wish him good luck in the establishment of this center which will increase the reputation of the Munich region for being highly advanced in neuro- and cognitive science, and, by building brides towards engineering, in innovative technical solutions.