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  • In direct comparison to the other modes of transport, railway transport features a lower level of pollutant emissions, a more favorable energy balance, and a lower land consumption. Nevertheless, more than 180 years of railway operations in Germany do have an impact on the environment. Especially the release of inorganic and organic substances from railroad traffic and associated infrastructures are of importance in this context. Given the present heterogeneous and insufficient data situation regarding railway transport-related air pollutant emissions, the aim of this research project is to identify possible data deficits and to make an important scientific contribution to closing current knowledge gaps.

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  • In a clinical proof-of-concept study, Fraunhofer ITEM researchers were able to demonstrate that chip cytometry can also be used to analyze bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid or induced sputum. This method enables quantitative and even multiple repeated analyses also of the small amounts of morphologically heterogeneous cell populations that are typical of these biological samples.

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  • The aim of the Fraunhofer High-Performance Centers is to speed up innovation transfer. In March 2021, the High-Performance Center Medical and Pharmaceutical Engineering was launched. With a focus on personalized implants and respiratory systems as well as individualized pharmaceutical production, the goal is to create a platform for research and the transfer of innovations into patient care.

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  • Learning to understand and apply chemistry in the context of sustainability – from the molecular level to global product flows, sustainability assessment and alternative business models for chemical products – is the aim of the international professional Master’s program ”M.Sc. Sustainable Chemistry” at Leuphana University Lüneburg. In collaboration with Prof. Ralf Ebinghaus of the Helmholtz Centre Hereon in Geesthacht, we will be offering the module “Law, International Regulations & Chemicals Management“.

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  • Chronic heart failure, a condition suffered by more than two million people in Germany alone, to date can only be treated to a limited extent. Today, Prof. Thomas Thum, Director of the Fraunhofer Institute for Toxicology and Experimental Medicine ITEM and Head of the Institute for Molecular and Translational Therapy Strategies (IMTTS) at the Hannover Medical School (MHH), has been awarded the Paul Martini Prize for the identification and further development of novel RNA-based therapies for chronic heart failure. The prize is awarded each year by the Paul Martini Foundation, Berlin, for outstanding achievements in the field of clinical pharmacology and is worth 50,000 euros. "Professor Thum and his team have identified a variety of new therapeutic targets, have developed novel therapies based on these and have now tested one of these RNA therapeutics in patients for the first time. This gives hope for treatment progress and is an excellent example of translation from bench to bedside,” Prof. Dr. Stefan Endres of the University of Munich paid tribute to the awardee on behalf of the six-member jury.

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  • In May 2020, the international consortium iCAIR® started a research project aimed at developing therapeutics against SARS-CoV-2. The Helmholtz Centre for Infection Research (HZI), which joined forces with the consortium's core team last year, is also closely involved in this project. The HZI researchers under the leadership of Prof. Ulrich Kalinke have expanded the iCAIR® outstanding talent pool: they boast a successful track record in antiviral drug research, in particular against human pathogenic RNA viruses, and have compound libraries as well as test models and primary virus isolates. In addition, a team from Fraunhofer ITMP led by Prof. Carsten Claussen and Dr. Ole Pless is on board as a temporary project partner. The iCAIR® research team already can report promising results, which were presented by iCAIR® coordinator Prof. Armin Braun and others at Fraunhofer ITEM's virtual workshop "Models of Lung Disease" in January.

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  • The aim of the FingerKIt is to develop for the first time an end-to-end automated process chain for the production of custom-designed implants. With Fraunhofer IAPT in the lead, the consortium furthermore comprises the Fraunhofer Institutes IKTS, ITEM, IWM and MEVIS. The current focus is on the growing market for finger joint implants.

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  • Pancreatitis drug camostat inhibits new SARS-CoV-2 activators identified in the upper respiratory tract / 2021

    Do known drugs help against SARS-coronavirus-2?

    News  / March 03, 2021

    There are no therapeutics available that have been developed for COVID-19 treatment. Repurposing of already available medication for COVID-19 therapy is an attractive option to shorten the road to treatment development. The drug camostat could be suitable. These findings support the further development of camostat and related compounds for COVID-19 therapy (EBioMedicine).

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  • Air purification and disinfection / 2021

    New type of ventilator for virus-free air

    Press release / March 01, 2021

    The danger of becoming infected with the coronavirus is especially high in enclosed spaces. This is because aerosols – which play a key role in the transmission of COVID-19 – increase the concentration of SARS-CoV-2 in indoor spaces. A new ventilation system developed by two Fraunhofer Institutes is able to filter the virus from ambient air. It then destroys the virus in a process known as cold combustion, leaving behind nothing but small quantities of carbon dioxide and hydrogen.

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