17.04.18 First human volunteer recruited: Start of Phase I-study for Alzheimer's therapy

The Phase I clinical study, in which the new Alzheimer's drug candidate PRI-002 is being tested for the first time in humans, has now officially started in Vienna. On Monday, PRI-002 was administered to the first healthy volunteer. The study will evaluate the safety and tolerability of the oral dosage form of PRI-002 in healthy volunteers. Prof. Dieter Willbold, developer of PRI-002 and director of the Institut für Physikalische Biologie, was present in Vienna while the Phase I study started.

18.03.18 Lessons from yeast may help tackle dementia

Together with Japanese colleagues, biophysicists at Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf (HHU) and Jülich Research Centre have examined the folding of specific proteins in yeast fungi. They discovered similar mechanisms to those found in prions, i.e. proteins that are misfolded and can trigger neurodegenerative diseases. From the prions in yeast, the researchers were able to acquire new insights into the misfolding of these harmful proteins. Their results have been published in the scientific journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).

21.09.17 World Alzheimer’s Day: Interview with Prof. Dieter Willbold

On September 21, the international World Alzheimer’s Day, Prof. Willbold has given an interview to the Biophysical Society on how biophysics research contributes to understanding Alzheimer’s Disease.

08.09.17 Science: Sharpest Image of Alzheimer’s Fibrils Shows Previously Unknown Details

A team of researchers from Germany and the Netherlands have determined the structure of an amyloid fibril with previously unachieved resolution. The fibrils of the body’s own amyloid beta (Aβ) protein are the main constituent of Alzheimer’s disease related and characteristic pathological protein deposits in the brain. The atomic-level three-dimensional structure elucidated by scientists from Forschungszentrum Jülich, Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf, the Centre for Structural Systems Biology in Hamburg, and Maastricht University displays previously unknown structural details which can answer many questions on the growth of harmful deposits and also explain the effect of genetic risk factors. The results have been published in the renowned journal Science.

04.08.17 Düsseldorf-Jülich Symposium on Neurodegenerative Diseases 2017

We are pleased to invite you to the second Düsseldorf-Jülich Symposium on Neurodegenerative Diseases "Formation, aggregation and propagation of amyloids", which will take place in Düsseldorf, November 27-29. For further information, please visit:

08.03.17 Erwin Niehaus-Preis for Alexander Büll

Jun.-Prof. Dr. Alexander Büll (34) has been awarded the Erwin Niehaus-Preis by the Alzheimer Forschung Initiative e.V. (AFI). With the award comes 40.000 Euro in funding for a research project on artificial amyloid plaques. (more in German)

24.02.17 Fluorescent Proteins in New Colours

Researchers from Jülich and Düsseldorf have succeeded in taking an important step towards making LOV proteins more usable for future biotechnological applications. These glowing protein molecules regulate many light-dependent processes in plant and bacterial cells. They also have favourable properties for various light-based applications. This means they could serve as a new class of molecular markers to analyse cellular processes using fluorescence microscopy. more (in German)

06.02.17 Alzheimer’s Drug: Researcher from Jülich and Düsseldorf on the Track of New Substances

New drugs to treat Alzheimer’s disease are urgently needed. One approach might be to prevent the clustering of molecules of the amyloid beta protein, which aggregates during the development of Alzheimer’s – initially forming oligomers in the nervous tissue and later leading to deposits known as plaques. Both have a toxic effect on the nervous tissue. Dr. Wolfgang Hoyer from Forschungszentrum Jülich and Heinrich Heine University Düsseldorf (HHU) is aiming to identify potential inhibitors of the amyloid beta protein. The two-year research project is being provided with € 39,900 in funding from the research initiative Alzheimer Forschung Initiative e.V. (AFI). more (in German)

16.12.16 ERC Consolidator Grant for Dr. Wolfgang Hoyer

Dr. Wolfgang Hoyer is the recipient of one of the prestigious Consolidator Grants of the European Research Council ERC. For his project "BETACONTROL" the ERC will now provide 2 Million Euro in funding over a timeframe of five years. More than 2300 scientists from all over Europe had applied. Dr. Hoyer leads a research group at the Institut fü Physikalische Biologie and at the Institute of Complex Systems (ICS-6) at Forschungszentrum Jülich.

16.12.16 Autophagy and the Battle Against Viruses

This year’s Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine will be awarded on 10 December in Stockholm in recognition of research on the molecular principles of autophagy. Recent research has shown that this "recycling system" of the cell is linked to numerous disease-relevant processes in the organism. One important example of this is viral infections. Scientists in the "virus–host interactions" working group at the Institut für Physikalische Biologie and the Institute of Complex Systems (ICS-6) at Forschungszentrum Jülich are focusing on a protein of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) that appears to "hijack" elements of the autophagic system – a path which is now set to be further investigated using new high-end methods. In this interview, Dr. Alexandra Boeske, postdoc and member of the working group, offers an insight into the research and explains the crucial advantages of combining structural biology and cell biology. (in German)

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