The German centre for image-guided medicine is set to be built in Magdeburg

Through various research and development projects as part of the BMBF innovation initiative “Unternehmen Region”, medical engineering has successfully been developed into a research focus in and around Magdeburg - in close cooperation with the state of Saxony-Anhalt. The state secretary named the ASTER innovation forum, the “Intelligente Katheter” junior researchers’ group and the TASC telemedicine project as examples. As a result, an environment has arisen, in which the cooperation between medics and engineers, between scientists and business people has developed continually: “I assume that the reputation of Magdeburg as a centre of innovation for medical engineering will continue to grow as a result of the new STIMULATE research campus.”

State secretary Cornelia Quennet-Thielen from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), the minister of science and economics for the state of Saxony-Anhalt, Prof Dr Birgitta Wolff, the vice chancellor of the Otto von Guericke University of Magdeburg, Prof Dr Jens Strackeljan and Dr Heinrich Kolem, CEO AX Division of Siemens Healthcare AG, opened the STIMULATE research campus in Magdeburg.

International lighthouse project
4 hands simultaneously pressed the big red button in the angiography laboratory of the Experimentelle Fabrik Magdeburg. This was the start of the interdisciplinary research project as an international lighthouse project. Under the shared umbrella of the research campus, scientists and developers of engineering and medical faculties at the University of Magdeburg and non-university research facilities will develop technology for image-guided minimal-invasive methods in medicine together with Siemens Healthcare AG and regional enterprises in the future. At the centre: Widespread diseases such as cancer, strokes, dementia and heart attacks.

The push of the button to start the interdisciplinary research project STIMULATE

Prof Dr Birgitta Wolff expressed herself particularly confidently, “This project has power. I am pleased that there is always good money for good ideas.” According to her, the region of Magdeburg has about 4,000 workplaces in medical engineering.
“With the STIMULATE research campus, we want to develop the Otto von Guericke University of Magdeburg into a world-leading site for image-guided procedures,” says the vice chancellor Prof Dr-Ing. Jens Strackeljan.

The spokesperson of the research campus, Prof Dr Georg Rose from the chair of medical telematics and medical engineering at the university believes the subsidy by the BMBF for STIMULATE confirms the high quality of medical engineering research in Magdeburg. “We are not just pressing the red button symbolically; the research campus is fully functioning. Within our establishment, the medics and engineers, as well as the university and Siemens have worked closely and equally for many years.” In the long term, the STIMULATE project will develop into the “German centre for image-guided medicine”.

Dr Heinrich Kolem emphasised that the STIMULATE research campus fits outstandingly into the strategic alignment of his company. “The future will belong to image-guided minimal-invasive diagnostics and treatment. With our Magdeburg partners, we would like to develop product innovations for the international health markets.”

The federal government is providing 1.6 million Euro in the first year for this and, after a successful preliminary phase, further research subsidies in the subsequent years. The contributions from the affiliated scientific and industrial partners will be added to this. The perspective total subsidy period by the BMBF is up to 15 years.

Author: Matthias Ulrich