About FOR 2240

Department of Ophthalmology, University of Cologne

The University of Cologne, established in 1388, is one of the largest German universities and one of eleven German elite universities. The Medical Faculty has two Max Planck Institutes for high-profile basic science on campus and has its research focus on age-related diseases, inflammation and regeneration. There are several excellence clusters and priority research groups of the German Research Foundation (DFG) on site. The two Max Planck Institutes in age-related medicine and regeneration allow for ample basic science cooperation options. The Dept. of Ophthalmology is one of the largest in Germany with the highest number of inpatient treatments in 2014. The hospital comprises more than 70 beds and more than 6500 inpatients per year. International areas of expertise are corneal transplant surgery (DMEK/DSAEK/DALK), glaucoma surgery, vitreoretinal surgery, strabismology and tumor therapy. The Department currently performs the highest number of lamellar minimally invasive corneal transplants in Germany and also has a strong expertise in artificial corneal transplantation (www.biocornea.eu). AMD treatment and research together with the EUGENDA database is another important focus. Among all University Eye Hospitals in Germany, the most glaucoma surgeries are performed in Cologne.

The Department has a strong focus on clinical and experimental imaging and on translational research and comprises 37 full time physicians and scientists. There are two reading centers for phase II-IV studies and one clinical trial center in the department with over 15 ongoing phase II-IV clinical trials. The research is funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) via the recently established priority research unit FOR 2240 (“(Lymph)angiogenesis and cellular immunity in inflammatory diseases of the eye”) , as well as by two EU research grants (COST Action BM1302 “Joining Forces in Corneal Transplantation” is chaired in Cologne by Prof. Cursiefen; the reading center for EU FP7 STRONG Study is in Cologne), by the Bayer Graduate School in Pharmacology, by DAAD, ProRetina and by ample support from industry and private foundations. The Chair in Experimental Immunology of the Eye (Prof. Langmann) was endowed by the Stock Foundation, Cologne. Third party funding in the last 3 years was more than 6 million euros. There is access to animal care facilities in house and on campus and the research area is more than 300 square meters. The department published more than 80 original manuscripts last year with an overall impact factor of more than 250. A German-language overview on the FOR 2240 from May 2017 can be found here.

Three thematic areas

Background and specific aims