Anyone who has a severe bacterial infection is given an antibiotic. Treatment of severe viral infectious diseases is much more difficult: there are still too few and too unspecific antiviral drugs.
In order to develop efficient antiviral treatments, we need to understand the life cycle of viruses and exactly which processes take place. Basic virological research with imaging and structural analytical technologies helps to elucidate the fundamental molecular principles that play a role during a viral infection.
The aim of the Research Training Group "VISION" is to train a new generation of virologists in the application of these technologies and thus establish an integrative approach to structural virology. Because only the integration of these techniques into virological research makes it possible to understand the course of viral infections in all its complexity. And that requires special training: both in structural biology and in virology.
The spokesperson of the Research Training Group is Professor Thomas Krey, head of the Institute of Biochemistry at the University of Lübeck, co-spokesperson and co-applicant Professor Kay Grünewald (University of Hamburg and Leibniz Institute of Virology (LIV)). In addition to the BNITM, other partner institutions are the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE), the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL), the German Electron Synchrotron (DESY), the European XFEL and the Centre for Structural Systems Biology (CSSB) Hamburg, the Hannover Medical School, the Technical University of Braunschweig and the University of Siegen.