New prospects for neurological diseases

Worldwide, over one billion people suffer from disorders of the central nervous system. Over 500,000 Germans suffer from developmental disorders of the central nervous system such as epilepsy or autism and every year, around 250,000 have a stroke. There are between 120,000 and 140,000 multiple sclerosis patients nationwide. These diseases all have one thing in common: although medicine can help alleviate the symptoms, a cure often does not exist.

Clinicians and basic researchers in close collaboration

The NeuroCure Excellence Cluster aims to test the findings of basic neuroscience research in clinical studies more frequently, and to develop new therapies and diagnostic approaches. The clinical studies can be conducted in the NeuroCure Clinical Research Center (NCRC).

The research focuses on diseases such as strokes, multiple sclerosis and developmental disorders of the central nervous system. They all have different causes and effects, but they have many things in common. For example, we know today that immunological processes play a major role in the primarily inflammatory diseases of the central nervous system such as multiple sclerosis, but also in non-inflammatory diseases such as strokes. Against this background, NeuroCure's research concentrates on the underlying disease mechanisms.

NeuroCure enhances the extremely attractive neuroscience location of Berlin by reinforcing the network of existing research activities, appointing new professorships and expanding junior research groups.

There are currently over 49 working groups at NeuroCure. They are studying the evolution-related and stereotype processes involved in the death of cells with the aim of finding treatment options. Protecting nerve cells from destruction is one of the main challenges posed by neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson's and dementia. The body's own protective mechanisms are also being investigated in the search for new therapeutic approaches. For example, the cells in the direct vicinity of the injury that are activated when a person has a stroke are more resilient when a second incident occurs.

Participating institutions

  • Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin
  • Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
  • Freie Universität Berlin

Non-university research institutions

  • Max Delbrück Centre for Molecular Medicine (MDC)
  • Leibniz Institut für Molekulare Pharmakologie (FMP)
  • German Rheumatism Research Centre Berlin (DRFZ)

Additional Information


Prof. Dr. Dietmar Schmitz (Charité)