ZIK Septomics 10th Anniversary Symposium
On November 20, 2019, the ZIK Septomics has celebrated its 10th anniversary with an anniversary symposium at the Abbe Centre on Beutenberg, Jena. In addition to numerous guests from science and industry, the speaker of the ZIK Septomics board, Prof. Bettina Löffler, welcomed Thuringia's Minister of Economic Affairs, Science and Digital Society, Wolfgang Tiefensee, and Dr. Gisela Philipsenburg, head of the department "Sustainable Regional Innovation Initiatives" of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research.
Prof. Hortense Slevogt, head of the research group Host Septomics, recapitulated in her presentation the ten-year development of the ZIK Septomics at the Jena research site and recalled, among other things, the beginnings of the ZIK with the working groups Clinical Septomics, Fungal Septomics and Host Septomics as well as the completion of the ZIK research building in 2012. The two leaders of the junior research groups Translational Septomics and Host Fungal Interfaces, Dr. Dr. Sina Coldewey and Dr. Slavena Vylkova, gave a short insight into their current research, which represent two main research areas at ZIK Septomics, translational, clinical research and research on invasive fungal infections. The importance of the ZIK for the research location Jena, resulting from 10 years of successful research on sepsis and severe infections, was emphasized by Prof. Axel Brakhage, Director of the Leibniz Institute for Natural Product Research and Infection Biology - Hans-Knöll-Institute Jena and one of the initiators of the ZIK Setoptomics, as well as Prof. Michael Bauer, Director of the Department of Anaesthesiology and Intensive Care Medicine at the University Hospital Jena and member of the Septomics Board.
A scientific highlight of the afternoon were the two keynote lectures held by two renowned sepsis experts. The intensive care physician Prof. Mervyn Singer, University College London, UK, presented the hypothesis that sepsis-related organ failure could be due to a downregulated metabolism caused by a reduced energy supply in the cells. Prof. Mihai Netea, who, among other things, is investigating the immune response to invasive fungal infections, made it clear in the second lecture that, in addition to antimicrobial therapy and intensive care measures, the immune system of sepsis patients must also be strengthened by immunomodulatory therapies.
At a concluding reception in the foyer, the visitors finally had the opportunity to round off the afternoon with stimulating talks and discussions.