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Synthetic biology (SynBio) is focused on the design and construction of new biological elements such as , genetic circuits, cells or whole organisms. It is an exponentially growing field where biology is considered as a technology. Molecular biologists team up with software coders, mechanical engineers and designers to reengineer living systems.

With this perspective in mind, we created this document to demonstrate that the TU Munich already has basically every necessary, interdisciplinary institute to become a global hub for Synthetic Biology.

We want to support this mission not only with our non-profit organization www..info but also by locally engaging all involved parties and institutes to make happen at the TU Munich.

Latest News

Werner Siemens Foundation supports TUM with € 11m

04.05.2016 - With its donation of 11.5 million euro, the Werner Siemens Foundation has facilitated the launch of the teaching and research domain Synthetic  at the Technical University of Munich (TUM). This gives the new TUM School of Bioengineering (MSB) a strong accent as an Integrative Research Center. The foundation contract was signed today in Munich. Synthetic  integrates the methodological research approaches of biochemistry, bioinformatics, , and industrial or “white” . The scientific groundwork was done by a research team headed by the chemist Prof. Thomas Brück, who, following an industrial career, received a call to the newly created Chair of Industrial Biocatalysis at TUM.

The grant, through which the Werner Siemens Foundation creates this new focus, will be used to upgrade the laboratories in Garching, fund the new chair for Synthetic  and create an associated student/teacher laboratory to attract particularly talented students.

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Center for research

30.6.2015 - Technische Universität München (TUM) is establishing the “TUM Center for Functional Assemblies (CPA)” to concentrate its wide-ranging expertise in research. It will conduct cross-departmental research into the functionalities and mechanisms of action of – a key to understanding cells, tissues, and organs. On this basis, the interdisciplinary Center will develop biomedical applications, for example to treat diseases caused by malfunctions in the interplay between biomolecules. The Joint Science Conference (GWK) decided today that the German Federal Government and the State of Bavaria will fund the new CPA building on the Garching Campus to the tune of 40 million euros.

The "TUM Center for Functional Assemblies" will unite the competences of TUM in chemistry, structural elucidation, chemical biology, single-molecule biophysics, cellular biophysics, nanotechnology, molecular dynamics simulation, and bioengineering in a ca. 4,000 square meter building complex in order to fully exploit the methodological and technological potentials available. New appointments will strengthen the fields of biomedical engineering and biomolecular systems engineering.

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Algae cultivation center opened

 

The new AlgaeTec facility at Ludwig Bölkow Campus, Ottobrunn © 2015 Andreas Heddergott / TUM
The Technical University of Munich (TUM) has built a worldwide one-of-a-kind technical facility for algae cultivation at the Ludwig Bölkow Campus in Ottobrunn to the south of Munich in cooperation with Airbus Group. Efficient processes for producing biokerosene and chemical products from algae will be developed there.

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Center for NMR Spectroscopy

26.4.2013 - The nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectrometer is without equal in its power and will foray into a new dimension in biomedical research: It will allow the precise measurement of the spatial structure of complexes and can even record their dynamics. These biosystems play a decisive role in the formation of and in the mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases. Very large aggregates are responsible for Alzheimer’s disease. In the future it will be possible to investigate them under near physiological conditions.

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Overview of Institutes and Organizations

TypeName & LinkLocationStatus

Chairs & Professors

Biomolecular NMR SpectroscopyGarching Forschungszentrum(tick)
Chairs & Professors

Systems Biophysics and Bionanotechnology ( Origami)

Garching Forschungszentrum(tick)
Chairs & ProfessorsIndustrial BiocatalysisGarching Forschungszentrum(tick)
Chairs & Professors-oriented BioinformaticsWeihenstephan(tick)
Chairs & ProfessorsBiochemical EngineeringGarching Forschungszentrum(tick)
Chairs & ProfessorsSyntheticGarching ForschungszentrumFunded and planend
Chairs & ProfessorsBiological ChemistryWeihenstephan(tick)
Chairs & ProfessorsProteomics and BioanalyticsWeihenstephan(tick)
Chairs & ProfessorsBiothermodynamicsWeihenstephan(tick)
Chairs & ProfessorsMicrobial EcologyWeihenstephan (tick)
Chairs & Professors

of horticultural crops

Weihenstephan (tick)
Chairs & ProfessorsTechnical MicrobiologyWeihenstephan (tick)
Chairs & ProfessorsFood and Bioprocess EngineeringWeihenstephan (tick)
Chairs & ProfessorsLivestock Weihenstephan (tick)
Chairs & Professors Weihenstephan (tick)
Chairs & ProfessorsChemistry of Biogenic ResourcesStraubing(tick)
Chairs & ProfessorsBiogenic PolymersStraubing(tick)
Graduate School

GS of Bioengineering

Garching ForschungszentrumLaunched and in start phase
Research CenterFunctional Assemblies (CPA)Garching ForschungszentrumFinanced & in Planning
Research CenterBavarian NMR Center  (BNMRZ)Garching ForschungszentrumIn Construction
Research Center CenterGarching Forschungszentrum(tick) started 2016
Research CenterHelmholtz Institute of Structural BiologyGarching Forschungszentrum / Martinsried(tick)
Research CenterIndustrial Garching Forschungszentrum(tick)
Pilot PlantTUM Pilot Plant for Industrial Garching Forschungszentrum(tick)
Pilot PlantTUM Center for Algae cultivationOttobrunn(tick)
IncubatorsIZB - Innovation and Start-Up Centre for Martinsried & Freising(tick)
IncubatorsBIO.M - Network MunichMartinsried(tick)
Clusterm4 - Cluster for personalized medicineMunich(tick) started 2015
Cluster Bavaria ClusterBavaria(tick)
ClusterBioPark RegensburgRegensburg(tick)

Meetups

Research - Centers & Institutes 

Campus Garching

TUM Research Center for Industrial 

Industrial  ("White ") utilizes microorganisms or  for large-scale production of substances like specialty chemicals and fine chemicals, agrochemical and pharmaceutical products, industrial additives, and, increasingly, bulk chemicals and fuels. Industrial  is focussed on the chemical industry utilizing renewable raw materials. Aim is to selectively convert these renewable raw materials into value-added products by use of biocatalysts.

The TUM Research Center for Industrial  is an institution which is associated with academic members (Professors) of three faculties of Technische Universität München. The main technical facility is the TUM Pilot Plant for Industrial  located in Garching near Munich.

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TUM Pilot Plant for Industrial 

The TUM Pilot Plant for Industrial  is in charge of

  • enabling the production of sufficiently large amounts of new biocatalysts, functional , and  biomaterials,
  • offering of the prerequisites for establishment of novel biotechnological production processes on a technically relevant scale,
  • promoting transfer of technologies via the demonstration of technical processes, and
  • contributing to a practically oriented education of graduate students in the field of Industrial . 

The TUM Pilot Plant for Industrial  enables to perform biotechnological processes up to the m3-scale and to obtain highly purified biotechnological products up to the kg-scale. The TUM Pilot Plant can be utilized by scientists of Technische Universität München and, under certain circumstances, by qualified scientists of other research institutions or private enterprises.

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Center for research (in planning)

The “TUM Center for Functional Assemblies (CPA)” concentrates TUM's wide-ranging expertise in research. It will conduct cross-departmental research into the functionalities and mechanisms of action of – a key to understanding cells, tissues, and organs. On this basis, the interdisciplinary Center will develop biomedical applications, for example to treat diseases caused by malfunctions in the interplay between biomolecules. The Joint Science Conference (GWK) decided today that the German Federal Government and the State of Bavaria will fund the new CPA building on the Garching Campus to the tune of 40 million euros.

The "TUM Center for Functional Assemblies" will unite the competences of TUM in chemistry, structural elucidation, chemical biology, single-molecule biophysics, cellular biophysics, nanotechnology, molecular dynamics simulation, and bioengineering in a ca. 4,000 square meter building complex in order to fully exploit the methodological and technological potentials available. New appointments will strengthen the fields of biomedical engineering and biomolecular systems engineering.

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TUM  Research Center

Considering the future potential and strategic importance of catalytic processes in numerous fields of science, engineering and industry, the Technische Universität München founded the TUM  Research Center (CRC) in 2008 and assigned it the status of a TUM Corporate Research Center. With the foundation of the CRC the Technische Universität München established a platform for the cooperation of prominent researchers with their teams who are focused on a wide range of problems, covering all significant aspects of  from theoretical basics to technology applications.

As an umbrella organization exeeding 300 scientists, Technische Universität München was awarded a grant for the constructions of a new research building, being situated at TUM Research Campus Garching, adjacent to the Chemistry Department. The new building is operating since the end of 2015 and enhances the working conditions of researchers by providing the latest laboratory facilities and supporting scientific collaborations of members and partners of the CRC beyond traditional department borders.

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Campus Martinsried

LMU Center for integrated science Munich

The overall aim of CIPSM is to foster an integrated  science approach in order to make seminal contributions to our understanding of  function in living systems. In addition, we plan to develop new technologies to study, manipulate and quantify  function in the natural environment. On the fundamental level of biology, we will follow three major lines of research: (I) analysis of  functions and networks in  expression and repair, (II) systemic study and intervention of  function and dysfunction in neurobiology and medicine and (III) analysis of  in cellular architectures and for compartmentalisation.

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Center for Algae cultivation 

 

The new AlgaeTec facility at Ludwig Bölkow Campus, Ottobrunn © 2015 Andreas Heddergott / TUM
The Technical University of Munich (TUM) has built a technical facility for algae cultivation at the Ludwig Bölkow Campus in Ottobrunn to the south of Munich in cooperation with Airbus Group. Efficient processes for producing biokerosene and chemical products from algae will be developed there.

Learn more

Center for NMR Spectroscopy (in construction)

The nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectrometer is without equal in its power and will foray into a new dimension in biomedical research: It will allow the precise measurement of the spatial structure of complexes and can even record their dynamics. These biosystems play a decisive role in the formation of and in the mechanisms of neurodegenerative diseases. Very large aggregates are responsible for Alzheimer’s disease. In the future it will be possible to investigate them under near physiological conditions.

Research - Chairs & Professors

Campus Garching

Chair of Industrial Biocatalysis Group - Prof. Brück

Industrial Biocatalysis © 2015 TUM
The research group “Industrial Biocatalysis” is focused on fundamental aspects of biocatalysis and genetic engineering to understand and predict the basic molecular and structural features that provide or impose industrial process fitness on biocatalytic systems.

Research involves biocatalytic aspects of biomass  into building blocks for chemical, pharmaceutical, food and energy production. Cores themes are the isolation, characterization and process relevant optimization of novel biocatalysts utilizing modern genomics and proteomics tools. Additionally, we use the comprehensive toolbox of synthetic biology to create process tailored whole cell biocatalysts for  of biomass into value adding products. Associated with these efforts is the development of research tools for the utilization and optimization of phototrophic organisms that combine remediation of CO2 greenhouse gas effects with the production of value-adding product streams.

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Chair of Bioprocess Engineering - Prof. Weuster-Botz

Der Lehrstuhl für Bioverfahrenstechnik befasst sich in Forschung und Lehre mit allen Aspekten der technischen Nutzung biologischer Stoffumwandlungen. Wissenschaftliche Schwerpunkte sind Bioreaktoren und Biokatalyse, sowie Fermentation und Prozessintegration.

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Chair of Synthetic Biochemistry - Prof. Lang

Our newly established lab for Synthetic Biochemistry and Chemical Biology at the Technische Universität München, Department of Chemistry, is conducting research in the interdisciplinary area of Chemical Biology, applying concepts from organic chemistry to develop new chemical tools for the investigation of biological problems. Research focuses on the targeted chemical synthesis of new artificial biomolecules (,, , ) tailored to investigate and manipulate complex cellular processes in  and  biological systems.

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Chair of Biomolecular NMR Spectroscopy

We are using nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy and complementary structural biology and biophysical techniques to study the structure, interactions and dynamics of biomolecules in solution.

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Chair of Systems Biophysics and Bionanotechnology - Prof. Simmel

Our goal is the realization of self-organizing molecular systems that are able to respond to their environment, compute, move, take action. On the long term, we envision autonomous systems that are reconfigurable, that can evolve, develop, or even learn.

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Graduate School of Bioengineering

The Graduate School of Bioengineering (GSB) is a highly innovative Graduate Centre at the Technische Universität München. Our aim is to educate a new generation of uniquely trained scientists at the interface of engineering, medicine, natural, life and computer sciences. As an interdisciplinary school, GSB provides excellent opportunities for conducting doctoral projects, which will qualify our graduates for the best jobs available, both in academia and industry.

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Campus Weihenstephan 

Chair of -oriented Bioinformatics - Prof. Mewes, Prof. Frishman

The biological research was rapidly changing during last years: In past the research activities covered investigations of single processes including isolated and products. Now we meet the technical requirements to identify and analyse potentially all and products of an organism to explore their function in the network of processes of live. These break-through, which was partially triggered by the , is running with increasing speed around the world. It will get a similar meaning for the biological research as the development of microchips for the informatics.

To understand the genetical processes we also have to understand the network of interactions that occure during transposition of the genetical program. Therefore we have to identify the components of these networks, the , products and their relations and functions in addition to the complete . This only seems possible if many of the investigations to enhance the understanding of functions are carried out with the majority of .

Bioinformatics is an emerging scientific discipline representing the combined power of biology, mathematics, and computers. Bioinformatics is needed to handle the enormous amount of data being generated in biological research. The amount of public sequence data doubles every 12-14 months and will increase even more dramatically in the coming years. The resulting bottleneck -- a wedge between having data and knowing what the data mean -- must be overcome to facilitate breakthroughs in life sciences. Bioinformatics represents a frontier in biological research and the best path toward finding meaning in a world of complex data.

Chair of Biological Chemistry - Prof. Skerra

Unsere Arbeitsgruppe ist im Bereich der Biochemie auf dem Gebiet Engineering und Design tätig. Ziel unserer Arbeiten ist es einerseits, künstliche Proteine mit neuen Funktionen in rationalen wie auch kombinatorischen Forschungsansätzen zu konstruieren. In diesem Zusammenhang konnten wir in den letzten Jahren auch eine Reihe von Methoden entwickeln, die es uns gestatten, natürliche Proteine mit wichtigen biologischen Funktionen funktionell und strukturell zu analysieren. Dabei spielt die Proteinkristallographie in unserem Labor eine zunehmende Rolle.

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Institute of Horticultural Crops - Prof. Poppenberger

Our institute uses cutting edge research technology in , , biochemistry and cell biology to improve our understanding of the biological mechanisms, which underlie growth regulation in plants, and make this knowledge applicable for the breeding and production of horticultural crops. We educate students in plant and plant and communicate our findings to an interested public. 

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Chair of Biothermodynamics - Prof. Minceva

The research focus of our group is the development of efficient separation processes indownstream processing of biomolecules and their integration with the upstream processing steps, in particular bioreactors. This is realized by the use of thermodynamic models for the prediction of phase equilibria, unconventional solvents (ionic liquids and deep eutectic solvents) and novel  (liquid  and monoliths) together with continuous separation and integrated process concepts. The processes currently in focus are low-energy separation processes, in particular chromatography, extraction, adsorption and membranes, suitable for recovering and separation of biomolecules from complex liquid mixtures.

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Chair of Technical Microbiology - Prof. Vogel

The chair of "Technische Mikrobiologie" was established 1st October 1993 as a part of the "Faculty of Brewing, Food Technology and Dairy Science" of the "Technische Universität München". Since 2006 it is a member of the department for "Nutrition and Food Science" in the "Center of Life and Food Sciences Weihenstephan". It is headed by the biochemist and Ordinarius Prof. Dr. rer. nat. habil. Rudi F. Vogel.

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Chair Microbial Ecology - Prof. Scherer

The Chair for Microbial Ecology is led by Siegfried Scherer (Department of Biosciences, Wissenschaftszentrum Weihenstephan). The Chair for Microbial Ecology is associated to ZIEL Institute for Food & Health. Fundamental research concentrates on the ecology and molecular of food borne pathogens. Several research groups in the department work on Listeria monocytogenes, Bacillus cereus, Salmonella enterica, Yersinia enterocolitica and enterohemorrhagic Applied research is performed in close cooperation with the food industry, with a focus on the characterization of food borne microbes, including identifiction of and yeasts, description of novel taxa and analysis of the biodiversity of food borne microbial consortia. 

The Department of Microbiology runs a microbial diagnostics unit, connected with a consulting service for the food industry with respect tp prevention and analysis of microbiological quality assurance problems. 

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Chair of Proteomics and Bioanalytics - Prof. Küster

The chair of Proteomics and Bioanalytics at the Technische Universität München comprises an international research team with a focus on proteomics, chemical biology and biomarker discovery. Since its inception in September 2007, the group is lead by Prof. Bernhard Küster who is also a member of the Excellence Cluster CIPSM (Centre for Integrated Protein Science Munich), the German Consortium for Translational Research DKTK and the Bavarian Biomolecular Mass Spectrometry Center BayBioMS.

Most of our research builds on the powerful combination of affinity chromatography and quantitative mass spectrometry along with sophisticated bioinformatics tools. We develop novel analytical methods for quantitative proteome research notably for high throughput applications, the analysis of post translational protein modifications and protein interactions. In our chemical biology efforts, we elucidate the selectivity of drug-target interactions on a proteome-wide scale, investigate the cellular mechanisms by which drugs exert their function and identify mechanisms of cancer therapy resistance. The biomarker discovery projects focus on cancer biology and include the identification of phosphoproteomic signaling biomarkers for drug and patient stratification, as well as indicators of drug effectiveness and treatment response. The infrastructure that facilitates our research comprises modern laboratory space including mammalian cell culture, organic chemistry, state of the art chromatographic and mass spectrometric equipment as well as a suite of relational databases and bioinformatics software.

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Chair for Food and Bioprocess Engineering - Prof. Kulozik

The main areas are chemical engineering, aseptic and sterile techniques, membrane and adsorptions separation techniques, concentration and drying as well as  bioprocess engineering of relevance for the food industry, mechanical engineering and the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries.

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Chair of Genetics - Prof. Gierl

Four research groups are located at the Lehrstuhl für Genetik. Using molecular genetics approaches the research focuses on the evaluation of plant metabolism and plant development. The main subjects are Arabidosis thaliana and Zea mays.

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Campus Martinsried

General Ecosystem

Many Bavarian universities, such as the LMU Munich, the Technische Universität München and the Universities of Würzburg and Regensburg, display a high level of expertise in biotechnology teaching and research and have achieved international renown in this future technology. A large number of young academics leave these universities with an outstanding education in biotechnology every year and bring the skills they have learned into the sector. This is good for Bavaria's biotechnology companies.
 

Biotechnology research in Bavaria does not only take place at university level, but also in a series of renowned non-university research institutions such as the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Health and the Max Planck Institutes of Biochemistry, Neurobiology and Psychiatry. These work together closely with biotechnology companies and the universities to conduct top biotechnology research. For example, theHelmholtz Centre for Environmental Health in Munich, with multiple development projects, is part of the top cluster "m4 – Personalized Medicine and Targeted Therapies: A New Dimension in the Development of Medicines".

Trade Fairs and Exhibitions

Analytica

analytica is the International Trade Fair for Laboratory Technology, Analysis and Biotechnology. Its unique exhibition profile unites all topics that pertain to modern analysis in research and industry. The various exhibition sectors will give you a comprehensive overview of the market. Be sure to also visit the scientific analytica conference and our practice-oriented program of related events.

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BioEurope 

BIO-Europe® is Europe's largest partnering conference serving the global biotechnology industry. The conference annually attracts leading dealmakers from biotech, pharma and finance along with the most exciting emerging companies. Produced with the support of BIO, it is regarded as a “must attend” event for the biotech industry.

Featuring EBD Group's sophisticated, web-based partnering system, partneringONE®, the event enables delegates to efficiently identify, meet and get partnerships started with companies across the life science value chain, from large biotech and pharma companies to financiers and innovative start-ups.

Learn more about the conference in Munich 2015

Companies & Startups

Over the last few years, a number of businesses have relocated from the USA, Japan and India, demonstrating Munich’s appeal as a centre for research, development and sales. This wave of relocation to Munich included Actavis, Exosome Diagnostics, Myriad Genetics, Vertex and Panacea Biotec. 


Fundings

Biotech Venture Capital in Muncih

Forbion - €700m under management

Seventure - €600m under management

TVM Capital - >€1bn under management

Wellington Partners - € 850m under management

Dievini - Advisors in helth sciecnes - Walldorf, €900m under management

 

 

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About the author

View full profile Jérôme Lutz from Berlin & Munich, Germany

I like to share the great things I discover daily while researching and working in the field of Synthetic Biology.

When I talk to people about it, they often refer to Science Fiction. However, when I send them links to this wiki and they read through those pages, they start understanding that this is real and it's happening right now.

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