About the institute

| New and old building of the Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine in the port of Hamburg. Source: BNITM.

The Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine (BNITM) is Germany’s largest institution for research, treatment and training in the field of tropical diseases and new emerging infections.

Research topics include clinical studies, epidemiology and disease control as well as the biology of pathogens, their reservoirs and vectors. The current scientific focus is on malaria, haemorrhagic fever viruses, immunology, epidemiology and clinical studies of tropical infections as well as on the mechanisms of the viral transmission by mosquitoes. For the handling of highly pathogenic viruses and infected insects, the Institute has laboratories of the highest biosafety level (BSL-4) and a BSL-3 insectary.

Research work in the high-biosafety laboratory BSL-4. Source: BNITM.

The Institute’s health care services include specific laboratory diagnostics of tropical diseases and other rare infections, a close cooperation with the German Army concerning medical care for military commitments in the tropics as well as the consultation of the scientific community, politics and the general public, which essentially contribute to the Institute’s national reputation.

The Institute has been appointed by the Federal Ministry of Health as the National Reference Center (NRC) for the detection of all tropical pathogens as well as by the WHO as Collaborating Center for arboviruses and haemorrhagic fever viruses.

The teaching activities comprise a three months full-time course on all aspects of tropical medicine for physicians as well as a training program for PhD students at the Institute and a number of activities on continuing education in topics related to travel medicine and international health. Numerous scientists of the Institute are involved in student teaching as appointed professors of the University and the University Hospital of Hamburg.

In collaboration with the Ghanaian Health Ministry and the University of Kumasi the Institute has been operating a modern research and training center in the West-African rain forest for over ten years, which is also available to external research groups.

As a member of the Leibniz-Association and as a research institute of national importance, the Institute is jointly funded by the Federal Government, the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg and the other federal states.


Bernhard Nocht Institute for Tropical Medicine

Bernhard-Nocht-Straße 74
D-20359 Hamburg

Tel.: +49 40 42818-0
(Switchboard of the Institute)

Tel.: +49 40 312851
(For Patients)

Fax: +49 40 42818-400
E-mail: bni(at)bnitm.de