Metabolic Health



Institute of Epidemiology (EPI)

Director: Prof. Dr. Annette Peters

The Institute of Epidemiology (EPI) assesses genetic, environmental and lifestyle risk factors which jointly determine the occurrence of major chronic diseases. The focus is on the development and progression of metabolic, respiratory and allergic diseases, as well as heart diseases and mental health. The goal is to understand the molecular underpinning of disease better and to translate this knowledge into personalized approaches of prevention as well as polices to improve health. Research builds on the unique resources of the KORA cohort, the KORA myocardial infarction registry, and the KORA aerosol measurement station. Aging-related phenotypes have been added to the KORA research portfolio within the frame of the Research Consortium KORA-Age. Moreover, the institute makes use of the birth cohorts GINI and LISA. It plays a leading role in the planning and setting up of the German National Cohort and builds the NAKO biorepository. 

The EPI website

Institute of Diabetes and Cancer (IDC)

Director: Prof. Dr. Stephan Herzig
Chair of Molecular Metabolic Control at Technische Universität München

The Institute of Diabetes and Cancer (IDC) is a member of the Helmholtz Diabetes Center (HDC) at the Helmholtz Center Munich and also a partner within the Joint Heidelberg-IDC Translational Diabetes Program. The Institute of Diabetes and Cancer is tightly integrated into the German Center for Diabetes Research (DZD) and the Collaborative Research Center SFB 1118 “Reactive metabolites and diabetic complications” at the University Medicine Heidelberg, Germany.

The IDC is investigating the molecular basis of severe metabolic disorders, including the Metabolic Syndrome and Type 2 Diabetes, and their roles in tumor initiation and progression.

To the IDC website

Institute of Diabetes Research (IDF)

Director: Prof. Dr. Anette-Gabriele Ziegler
Chair of Diabetes and Gestational Diabetes at Technische Universität München

The Institute of Diabetes Research (IDF) researches the pathogenesis and prevention of type 1 diabetes and gestational diabetes. To this end, it investigates the molecular mechanisms leading to the development of the disease, in particular the interaction of environment, genes and immune system. The aim of this research is to identify markers for early diagnosis and to develop treatments for the prevention and cure of diabetes.

To the IDF website

Institute of Diabetes Research and Metabolic Diseases (IDM)

Director: Prof. Dr. Andreas Birkenfeld
Medical Director of the Department of Internal Medicine IV - Endocrinology, Diabetology and Nephrology at the University Hospital Tübingen

The primary research objective of the Institute of Diabetes Research and Metabolic Diseases (IDM) of Helmholtz Zentrum München at the University of Tübingen is the individualized prediction of diabetes risk, diabetes prevention and the personalized treatment of diabetes. The main research focus is on gene-environment interaction in type 2 diabetes.

To the website of IDM

Institute of Diabetes and Obesity (IDO)

Director: Dr. Timo Müller (acting)

The Institute of Diabetes and Obesity (IDO) studies the metabolic syndrome by means of systems biological and translational approaches, using cell-based systems, genetically modified mouse models and clinical intervention studies. The aim of this research is to discover new signaling pathways in order to develop innovative interdisciplinary approaches for the personalized prevention and treatment of obesity, diabetes and concomitant diseases.

To the IDO website

- Research Unit NeuroBiology of Diabetes (NBD)

Head: Dr. Paul Pfluger

The Research Unit NeuroBiology of Diabetes is associated with the IDO, and aims to unravel the role of the central nervous system in the etiology of metabolic disease. Focus is directed towards understanding the impact of hypothalamic inflammation for the development of obesity and diabetes type 2. The NBD further assesses the role of epigenetic signaling as gene-environment interface for our adaptive metabolic control. Last, the NBD aims to gain insight into the underpinnings of leptin resistance, yoyo dieting, and our failure to stay lean.

To the NBD website

Institute of Diabetes- and Regeneration Research (IDR)

Director: Prof. Dr. Heiko Lickert
Chair of Diabetes Research / Beta Cell Biology at Technische Universität München

The Institute of Diabetes and Regeneration Research (IDR) researches the biology and regeneration of the pancreas, especially the insulin-producing beta cells. The primary aim is to enable regenerative therapy approaches for the treatment of diabetes mellitus and thus to provide alternatives to traditional therapy approaches. The IDR seks to discover novel drugs that enhance beta cell differentiation and function and is working towards a beta cell replacement therapy.

To the IDR website

Institute of Experimental Genetics (IEG)

Director: Prof. Dr. Martin Hrabě de Angelis
Chair of Experimental Genetics at Technische Universität München

The research objective of the Institute of Experimental Genetics (IEG) is to elucidate the causes and pathogenesis of human diseases. Due to its prominent role in interdisciplinary and international consortia, the IEG is a global leader in the systemic study of mouse models for human diseases and the elucidation of involved genes. The main focus is on metabolic diseases such as diabetes.

to the IEG website

Institute of Functional Epigenetics (IFE)

Director: Prof. Dr. Robert Schneider

The Institute of Functional Epigenetics (IFE) is interested in how genes are packaged within the nucleus of a cell. The focus is on the so-called "histone proteins" on which the DNA strands are wound and that can determine whether a gene can be read or not. In addition, we are examining the connections between common diseases and distortions in DNA packing.

To the IFE website

- Research Unit Molecular Epigenetics (MEG)

Head: Prof. Dr. Dirk Eick

The Research Unit Molecular Epigenetics (MEG) researches basic epigenetic mechanisms of gene regulation, thus creating the basis for a better understanding of the role of epigenetics in the etiology of diseases. 

To the MEG website

Institute of Pancreatic Islet Research, Paul-Langerhans-Institut Dresden (IPI)

Director: Prof. Dr. Michele Solimena
Chair of Molecular Diabetology at Technische Universität Dresden

The Institute of Pancreatic Islet Research (IPI) focuses on basic and clinical research on pancreatic beta cells, which are responsible for production and secretion of insulin.

To the IPI website

Institute of Translational Stem Cell Research (ITS)

Director: Prof. Dr. Tor Henrik Semb

The objective of the Institute of Translational Stem Cell Research (ITS) is to develop a stem cell-based replacement therapy in type 1 diabetes. The scientists aim to develop safe approaches for up-scaled production of insulin-producing beta cells from human pluripotent stem cells (hPSCs). An important milestone in the short term is the proper production of the cells following defined standards of Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP). The ITS works closely together with the University of Copenhagen.

To the ITS website

Research Unit Molecular Endocrinology and Metabolism (MEM)

Head: Prof. Dr. Jerzy Adamski

Helmholtz Institute for Metabolic, Obesity and Vascular Research

Director: Dr. Matthias Blüher

To the HI-MAG website

Helmholtz Diabetes Center (HDC)

Scientific Director: Prof. Dr. Stephan Herzig

To the HDC website