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Press releases 2016

Rejuvenating the brain’s disposal system


Heidelberg, 21 December 2016 – A characteristic feature of Alzheimer’s disease is the presence of so called amyloid plaques in the patient’s brain – aggregates of misfolded proteins that clump together and damage nerve cells. Although the body has mechanisms to dispose these aggregates, it apparently cannot keep up with the load in the diseased brain. Researchers from the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE), Munich and the Ludwig Maximilians University (LMU) Munich have now discovered a strategy to help the brain remove amyloid plaques. More precisely: they uncovered a factor that can activate microglial cells to engulf newly forming clumps in the brain. Microglia are the scavenger cells of the brain’s immune system that function in keeping the brain tidy and free of any damaging material. The work is published today in The EMBO Journal. 


EMBO Installation Grants to support eight researchers in establishing laboratories


Updated version, replacing the press release issued 12 December 2016


Heidelberg, 23 December 2016 – Eight life scientists have been awarded EMBO Installation Grants to set up independent research laboratories in the Czech Republic, Estonia, Poland, Portugal and Turkey.


EMBO Long-Term Fellowships now open all year round


Heidelberg, 28 November 2016 – In a move to increase the opportunity for young life scientists to obtain financial support for their postdoctoral research, EMBO announced today a significant change to its Long-Term Fellowship Programme. Following the change from a biannual deadline to a continuous application process, researchers wishing to secure such a fellowship are now able to apply throughout the year.


Twenty-five life scientists join EMBO Young Investigator network


Heidelberg, 20 October 2016 – EMBO announced today the selection of 25 young researchers as EMBO Young Investigators. They join a network of 74 current and 382 past Young Investigators who represent some of the best young group leaders in the life sciences in Europe and beyond.


Diet as medicine in mitochondrial diseases


Heidelberg, 19 September 2016 - Researchers from the University of Helsinki, Finland, found that diet could have a strong impact on the progression of mitochondrial disease. In their study, published in EMBO Molecular Medicine, low-carbohydrate diet aggravated muscle damage in patients with a mitochondrial muscle disease called “progressive external ophthalmoplegia” (PEO). However, damage was not permanent. The patients recovered quickly and short-term muscle damage eventually resulted in a modest improvement of muscle strength in the long run. However, more research is needed before diet change is used as a tool in therapeutic strategy.


EMBO and Wiley launch the SmartFigures Lab


Heidelberg, Germany and Oxford, UK, 9 September 2016 – EMBO and John Wiley and Sons, Inc. (NYSE: JWa and JWb), announced today the launch of the ‘SmartFigures Lab’, a prototype online publishing website with enhanced data presentation capabilities. The site results from the integration of SmartFigures, an open source application of the EMBO SourceData platform, with Wiley’s Content Enrichment Framework and research & development environment.


The EMBO Meeting to be held in Mannheim


Heidelberg, 5 September 2016 – The seventh edition of The EMBO Meeting will be held in Mannheim/Germany on 10-13 September 2016. Again, the meeting will combine four days of scientific talks, networking opportunities and career counseling, and enable life science researchers from Europe and beyond to discuss recent research results across the different life sciences areas.


A gene defect as a potential gateway for targeted prostate cancer therapy


Heidelberg, 5 September 2016 - The loss of CHD1, one of the most frequently mutated genes in prostate tumors, sensitizes human prostate cancer cells to different drugs, including PARP inhibitors. This suggests CHD1 as a potential biomarker for targeted prostate cancer therapy. These are the results of a study published today in EMBO reports.


EMBO welcomes Lithuania as its newest member


Heidelberg, 13 June 2016 - EMBO is pleased to announce that Lithuania has joined its intergovernmental funding body, the European Molecular Biology Conference (EMBC). Lithuania is the 29th country to be accepted into the EMBC, where it has access to the support offered by EMBO to talented researchers in the life sciences at all stages of their careers.


Richard Benton and Ben Lehner awarded EMBO Gold Medal 2016


Heidelberg, 25 May 2016 – EMBO is pleased to announce Richard Benton of the University of Lausanne, Switzerland, and Ben Lehner of the Centre for Genomic Regulation (CRG), Barcelona, Spain, as the recipients of the EMBO Gold Medal 2016. The EMBO Gold Medal, endowed with 10,000 Euro each, is awarded annually to young scientists for outstanding contributions to the life sciences in Europe. The award ceremony will take place on September 11, 2016, at the opening session of The EMBO Meeting in Mannheim, Germany.


58 life science researchers elected as new EMBO Members


Heidelberg, 23 May 2016 - EMBO today announced that 58 researchers in the life sciences were newly elected to its membership. 50 of the scientists reside in 13 different countries in Europe; eight Associate Members were elected from China, Japan, Lithuania, Singapore and the United States.


The EMBO community welcomes Malta


Malta joins EMBC as a new member state


Heidelberg, 21 March 2016 - EMBO is pleased to announce that Malta has joined its intergovernmental funding body, the European Molecular Biology Conference (EMBC). Malta is the 28th country to be accepted into the EMBC, where it can benefit from the support that EMBO offers to talented researchers in the life sciences at all stages of their careers.


A new biomarker of brain inflammation in early-stage Alzheimer’s disease


Heidelberg, 3 March 2016 – Researchers at the Ludwig-Maximilians-University, the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE), and the Institute for Stroke and Dementia Research (ISD) in Munich, Germany, have identified a brain inflammationmarker in patients at early asymptomatic stages of Alzheimer’s disease. This secreted marker molecule, which can be measured from cerebrospinal fluid taps, may provide clinicians with a rapidly detectable biomarker for the transition from preclinical Alzheimer’s disease to cognitive impairment and progression to full dementia. Such is the conclusion of a multi-center study on a large group of human patients, published online in EMBO Molecular Medicine.


Fiona Watt to receive the 2016 FEBS | EMBO Women in Science Award


Heidelberg, 26 February 2016 – EMBO and FEBS announce Fiona Watt, Director of the Centre for Stem Cells and Regenerative Medicine at King's College London, as the winner of the 2016 FEBS | EMBO Women in Science Award.


Wbp2 is a novel gene implicated in deafness


Heidelberg, 8 February 2016 – Researchers at King's College London and the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute in the United Kingdom have for the first time demonstrated a direct link between the Wbp2 gene and progressive hearing loss. The scientists report that the loss of Wbp2 expression leads to progressive high-frequency hearing loss in mouse as well as in two clinical cases of children with deafness with no other obvious features. The results are published in EMBO Molecular Medicine.


India to become second EMBC Associate Member State


EMBO, EMBC and India sign cooperation agreement


New Delhi / Heidelberg, 5 February 2016 – The Government of the Republic of India, EMBO and its intergovernmental funding body, the European Molecular Biology Conference (EMBC), have signed a Cooperation Agreement to strengthen scientific interaction and collaborative research between India and Europe. After the signing of an agreement with Singapore in July 2015, India will now become the second country to acquire the status of EMBC Associate Member State.



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Tilmann KießlingTilmann Kießling
Head, Communications
T. + 49 160 9019 3839