More than 5 million euros for kidney research

23.07.2021 | TopNews Prof. Dr. Thomas Benzing

© shutterstock

Second funding period for KFO 329 approved

The number of people suffering from chronic kidney disease is increasing worldwide. Diseases of the kidney filter, the glomeruli, play a decisive role in this. So far, however, the increasingly detailed understanding of the causes has not led to improved treatment options. With the goal of further optimizing the treatment of kidney patients in mind, Clinical Research Group (KFO) 329, funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG), began its work three years ago. Now, the second funding period of the research group "Molecular mechanisms of podocyte diseases - nephrology on the way to precision medicine" has been approved. The renewed funding runs until 2024 and includes funding totaling over five million euros.

The KFO 329 team consists of clinically active physicians and biologists who bring extensive experience from basic research and is headed by Prof. Dr. Thomas Benzing and Prof. Dr. Paul Brinkkötter. Their research will exploit molecular insights into specific signaling pathways as well as gene mutations involved in the development of glomerular diseases (defects of the renal filter) to establish new diagnostic and therapeutic approaches.

"The extension of the research group shows us that the DFG is convinced of the scientific work done so far. For us, this is a great incentive to continue to advance kidney research. The focus of the second funding period will be on translating findings from research into clinical practice and closely integrating basic research, science and clinical care for our patients," said Brinkkötter, coordinator of KFO 329. 

The KFO is based on close cooperation between the Clinic II for Internal Medicine, the ZMMK (Center for Molecular Medicine Cologne), the Cluster of Excellence CECAD, the Children's Clinic as well as the Institute for Human Genetics and the Cologne Center of Genomics, and is closely integrated into the research focus "Life Sciences" of the University of Cologne.

In addition, this time scientific colleagues from the University of Bonn (Institute for Molecular Medicine and Experimental Immunology (IMMEI), the Heidelberg University Hospital (Klaus Tschira Institute for Integrative Computational Cardiology Department of Internal Medicine III) and the University Clinic Freiburg (Institute for Clinical Pathology) are also part of the research team.

More information in the press release of the University Hospital: