Symposium for new paths in evolutionary medicine

Interdisciplinary exchange between Kiel University Medicine and the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Biology in Plön (MPI)

November 22, 2023

On 21 November, the "Symposium for the Promotion of Interdisciplinary Exchange in Evolutionary Medicine" took place at the Max Planck Institute in Plön. The aim was to redefine the collaboration between basic research at the MPI and Kiel University Medicine and to demonstrate innovative ways of understanding and treating chronic diseases such as cancer and inflammation.

A total of 13 renowned scientists from the MPI and the Faculty of Medicine at the CAU and the Kiel Campus of the UKSH presented their current research at the first joint symposium organised by the MPI and Kiel University Medicine. The aim was to redefine and strengthen the interdisciplinary exchange between the basic research taking place in Plön and the experimental and applied evolutionary medicine taking place in Kiel. The symposium was organised and initiated by Prof. John Baines. With a professorship at the Institute of Experimental Medicine at Kiel University and as head of an independent research group at the MPI, he has made a significant contribution to the successful collaboration between research at the MPI and medicine. "Evolutionary medicine has grown steadily over the last two decades, and I am delighted that Schleswig-Holstein is becoming an internationally recognised hotspot for this field thanks to the support of the Faculty of Medicine and the MPI in Plön," says Prof. John Baines.

Prof Paul B. Rainey, Managing Director and Director of the Department of Microbial Population Biology at the MPI in Plön, and Prof Joachim Thiery, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine at Kiel University and Head of Research and Teaching at the UKSH on the Kiel Campus, were also present, who want to promote this interdisciplinary exchange in the long term and are looking forward to closer cooperation in the future. "Evolutionary medicine is a major topic for the future when it comes to elucidating the variability of disease expression and therapeutic response.  It was and is very important to us to bring together the high level of expertise in evolutionary research at the MPI with clinical and scientific staff at the University Medical Centre," says Joachim Thiery.

Prof Rainey was delighted to host the symposium at the MPI and emphasised: "We greatly value our numerous links with Kiel University. There are a number of natural synergies between our two institutions, and the opportunities offered by today's meeting will help to break new ground in research, teaching and mentoring. We look forward to building on the progress that has been made."

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