News & Press releases 2015

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The "Bach case": More investigations on the Bach portrait from Dortmund

On June 19, a group of art collectors and physicists met at the synchrotron DELTA in Dortmund to analyze three portraits of the famous composer Johann Sebastian Bach. They found that one of the portraits might not be dated correctly, so that some more investigations on the case are necessary. ISAS scientist Dr. Alex von Bohlen, expert in X-ray spectroscopy, has already devised a strategy for further analyses.

This press release (PDF) is available in German only.

Specific therapies for cardiovascular diseases

Customized medical drugs are one of the most ambitious aims of modern medicine – and at the same time one of its greatest challenges. Humans are individuals that can respond to drugs in many different ways, so that scientists today often search for personalized approaches with therapies that are tailored to the needs of distinct patient groups or even individual patients. At ISAS, a new project has started in April that takes up the challenge: It will focus on the development and validation of diagnostic methods for cardiovascular diseases, aiming not only for the "proof of principle" but also for optimizing the method to work under highly standardized conditions. Thus the project will close a gap between basic research and clinical use that is often deemed too risky and costly by industrial partners, inhibiting the transfer of promising results into praxis. The MIWF (Ministry for Innovation, Science and Research) in NRW is going to fund the project with a total 3.6 million Euro.

This press release (PDF) is available in German only.

Albert Sickmann remains DGPF president

Professor Albert Sickmann, head of ISAS, has again been elected as president of the DGPF (Deutsche Gesellschaft für Proteomforschung).  He has been in office since July 2013 and was re-elected for another two years during the Proteomic Forum in Berlin at the end of March 2015.

The DGPF was founded in 2001 in Martinsried near Munich to promote and propagate scientific knowledge in the area of proteomic research. The association coordinates national research projects, communicates funding opportunities and serves as a contact point for cooperation projects. It also promotes the establishment of quality criteria and advises the German Ministry BMBF (Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung) in the matter of research funding for proteomics. The DGPF has about 300 members from academics as well as from small and medium-sized biotech companies, from established technology suppliers for biochemical analytics and from large pharmaceutical companies. Albert Sickmann has been a DGPF member since 2002 and has already been DGPF board member and 2nd vice president since 2011.

Young ISAS researcher wins Paul Drude medal

Andreas Furchner from the In Situ Spectroscopy group won the Paul Drude medal at the 9th Workshop Ellipsometry in Enschede, Netherlands in February. The medal is awarded to young scientists that provide outstanding contributions to ellipsometry, metrology, and spectroscopy research. His award winning presentation was titled "In-situ IR ellipsometry: Polymer thin films at the solid–liquid interface".

Leibniz Research Cluster seeks novel ways in bioactive compound development

Finally the time has come: On March 12, the new Leibniz Research Cluster (LRC) started with a ceremonial act. ISAS is one of five Leibniz institutes that participate in the cluster named "Bio/Synthetic multifunctional micro-production units". Scientists from all five institutes met for the kick-off meeting at the Leibniz Institute for Natural Product Research and Infection Biology (HKI) in Jena. Moreover, a representative from the Federal Ministry of Education and Research ceremoniously presented the official grant notification: The LRC will be funded with a total of 6.5 million euro until 2020.

With this financial background HKI, ISAS and the other partners (IPB Halle, IPF Dresden and INM Saarbrücken) plan to investigate biotechnological methods for the production of bioactive compounds, because plants or microorganisms can be important sources for drugs such as new antibiotics. However, it is often complicated and sometimes impossible to produce sufficient amounts of those bioactive compounds. The LRC therefore seeks novel ways in compound development and to this end combines expertise from institutes of the Leibniz sections C (life sciences) and D (mathematics, science and engineering). ISAS will particularly focus on establishing analytical strategies and methods for metabolite measurement and on developing a micro preparative purification method for the compounds.

All five institutes are going to establish special work groups for LRC research. They will be led by young scientists who thus get a chance to establish their own profile in their respective research field.

For more information on the cluster and the Kick-off meeting please have a look at the
> press release from HKI Jena
(in German only).

New standard work on X-ray fluorescence

Prof. Dr. Reinhold Klockenkämper and Dr. Alex von Bohlen from ISAS have published a new standard work on X-ray fluorescence methods. The book titled "Total-Reflection X-Ray Fluorescence Analysis and Related Methods" (second edition, published by Wiley) has been commercially available since the beginning of February 2015. It is the only monograph on total reflection X-ray fluorescence (TXRF) worldwide and describes different applications of the method in extreme micro and trace analysis as well as in surface and ultra-thin layer analysis. The method can be used for various purposes in life and material sciences, in toxicology or forensic science, and even in art history or archaeology.

The authors of the book both look back on many years of experience with TXRF: Reinhold Klockenkämper, an ISAS scientist for 36 years, has been working with X-ray spectroscopy methods for four decades. Alex von Bohlen has spent the past 25 years mainly on TXRF research.

For more information on the book please visit the > Wiley homepage.

Treasure hunting in the data chaos

With a new software, ISAS scientists and their project partners from Belgium and Norway believe they might have solved a big problem in life sciences: The software enables them for the first time to automatically analyze large amounts of proteomics raw data stored in public repositories such as the PRIDE database.

This press release (PDF) is available in German only.


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Tinka Wolf
Press officer
Tel.: ++49 231 1392-234
Fax: ++49 231 1392-4850