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Combined expertise in COVID-19 research: Federal Ministry of Health supports the Leibniz Center Infection

Tuesday, 21. April 2020

Hamburg. The Leibniz Center Infection (LCI) contributes to the control of the current pandemic spread of the new corona virus SARS-CoV-2 as well as of the associated serious lung disease COVID-19. In order to achieve this, the LCI is funded by the Federal Ministry of Health (BMG).

In close cooperation, the Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine (BNITM), the Research Center Borstel, Leibniz Lung Center (FZB) and the Heinrich Pette Institute, Leibniz Institute for Experimental Virology (HPI) have identified research fields in which they can make competent, professional contributions: In addition to joint efforts to characterize the SARS-CoV-2 virus more precisely and thus better understand its spread and properties, complementary infrastructures are to be developed at all three institutes.

To this end, BNITM will expand its diagnostic and sequencing capacity for the analysis of large sample volumes and support several African countries in establishing SARS-CoV-2 diagnostics.

The HPI contributes its expertise in translational research to investigate the pathophysiology of COVID-19. In addition, infrastructures for diagnostics are being expanded and used for the development of new antivirals and therapeutic measures against Covid-19.

The FZB will focus on the clinical treatment and care of COVID-19 patients. For this purpose, a pipeline for metagenomic analysis for the detection of corona viruses in respiratory patient materials will be established. In addition, existing drug collections will be tested and the structured initial medical assessment will be optimized with the help of software and trained staff.

"We are pleased with the recognition and support from the BMG. In the current situation, it is important to rapidly advance our understanding of the new corona virus disease COVID-19. To this end, the LCI partners BNITM, HPI and FZB will pool their expertise and work closely together," says Prof. Egbert Tannich, Chair of the Board of Directors at the Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine and current LCI spokesperson.

The Leibniz Center Infection is an alliance of three Leibniz institutes in northern Germany that aims to pool expertise in the field of infection research. Members are the BNITM, the FZB and the HPI.


Press Contact:

Dr. Franziska Ahnert (Tel.: 040/480 51-108, press(at)