Germany and Canada cooperating in biomedical research and regenerative medicine

Regenerative medicine has been an integral part of the German science landscape for many years. Along with the USA, Canada is another nation leading the way in the field of regenerative medicine.

Plants in laboratory

Plants in laboratory © Getty

The Fraunhofer Institute for Cell Therapy and Immunology (IZI) in Leipzig has therefore been endeavouring to intensify its cooperation with Canadian research institutions. By means of the close cooperation between the Fraunhofer IZI and McMaster University, this project centre is to focus for example on developing new automation strategies for manufacturing cell therapy products, point-of-care diagnostic systems and innovative biomaterials for biomedical applications. Moreover, the research projects already begun are to be integrated into the project centre and continued there. The goal of the project was to systematically expand and intensify joint activities in order to lay the foundations for a sustainable partnership and to build on this by establishing new partnerships with Canadian organisations.

BEAM Management-Team [f.l.t.r.]: Professor John Brennan (McMaster), Dr. Thomas Tradler (Fraunhofer IZI), Professor Jonathan Bramson (McMaster), Christopher Oelkrug (Fraunhofer IZI)

Joint project centre

In view of the extremely successful cooperation between the institutions on the initial joint projects and the promising business prospects in Canada, the Fraunhofer Society issued its approval at the beginning of October 2014 to the set-up and development of a joint project centre (Fraunhofer Project Center for Biomedical Engineering and Advanced Manufacturing, BEAM) in Hamilton. BEAM is managed by a team of German-Canadian experts.

New technologies with high market potential

The international cooperation between the project partners is making it possible to translate the core expertise of both institutions into brand-new, innovative technologies and products. The technologies developed by the partners in cooperation with numerous industrial partners have extraordinarily high market potential and will have a global impact on future developments in these areas. During the current phase of the partnership, both parties are drawing on existing infrastructures, a strategy that enabled the project to get off to a fast, efficient start.

Outstanding results and successes of the measure

The Fraunhofer IZI successfully established contact with Canadian partners and institutions as part of the project. Workshops and conferences were organised for this purpose and met with a great response. The funding helped identify joint projects at an early phase and recruit potential partners for McMaster University. Finally, the Fraunhofer IZI and McMaster University signed a partnership agreement at the end of September 2013.


DLR Project Management Agency
European and International Cooperation
Barbara Hellebrandt
Tel.: +49 228 3821 1433

Fraunhofer Institute for Cell Therapy and Immunology (IZI), Leipzig
Christopher Oelkrug
Tel.: +49 341 35536-3121