Translational Medicine

MDC scientists strive to understand the molecular mechanisms of health and disease and to eventually translate research findings into benefit for patients. That’s why linking basic with clinical research and driving application of biological knowledge in medical practice has been at the center of MDC’s mission from the very start. Ultimately, we want our work to make an impact in the clinics, for example through the development of new biomarkers or novel drug, gene and cell therapies.

To accomplish this goal, scientists at the MDC use and develop state-of-the art technologies such as transgenic mice to model disease, sophisticated imaging techniques, high-throughput technologies, or computational biology. Wherever possible, these techniques are also used to analyze patient samples. This “bench-to-bedside” approach is complemented by a “bedside-to-bench” approach, which aims to identify unmet clinical needs and cycle them back into basic research.

This bidirectional translational process requires an engaged and constant collaboration between basic researchers and medical partners. We achieve this through close partnerships with the Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin and many other university hospitals throughout Germany.

We believe that our scientific and technological developments should benefit society as a whole and should be adapted into new products, applications or services, whenever possible. Our dedicated technology transfer staff helps us to achieve this goal.



The Experimental and Clinical Research Centre (ECRC) is a center for translational medicine located on Campus Buch. Established in 2007, it is jointly run by the MDC and the Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin. The ECRC offers excellent opportunities for education in translational research and unique conditions for patient-oriented research and clinical studies in a research-driven environment. It includes a number of specialized outpatient clinics, a clinical research center and research laboratories.

Website ECRC



Building on the success of the ECRC, in 2013 the MDC and Charité institutionalized their collaboration in translational medicine by launching the Berlin Institute of Health (BIH). With the BIH, the MDC and the Charité have created a unique translational platform in Germany that transcends the boundaries of traditional disciplines and aims to transform the way translational research is pursued. The BIH’s mission is to accelerate the application of basic research findings into medical practice, embracing a systems approach to medicine.

Website BIH



Contributing its expertise in basic and preclinical research of cardiovascular disease, the MDC was instrumental in establishing the German Center for Cardiovascular Research (DZHK) in 2011, one of six German Health Research Centers. The DZHK brings together Helmholtz Research Centers, university hospitals and medical faculties in a nation-wide research network. Our scientists contribute important scientific expertise and techniques to the consortium, collaborating with multiple partners. This puts the MDC is in an optimal position to make a strong impact on cardiovascular research on a national and international level.

Website DZHK


German Health Research Centers

The MDC participates actively in three of the six German Health Research Centers. In addition to its partnership in the DZHK, the MDC also closely collaborates with the German Center for Neurodegenerative Diseases (DZNE) as part of the POF program “Diseases of the Nervous System” in the Helmholtz Association, and is currently expanding its contribution to cancer research within the German Cancer Consortium (DKTK), a consortium organized around the core center DKFZ.