Clinical Research Unit, German Research Foundation (KFO 252/2) Dresden-Rossendorf-Frankfurt

Microenvironment of the Adrenal in Health and Disease


Clinical Research Unit, German Research Foundation (KFO 252/2)

Funding period


Participating institutions

  • Faculty of Medicine Carl Gustav Carus of the Technische Universität Dresden
  • Max-Planck Institute of Cell Biology and Genetics
  • Helmholtz Centre Dresden Rossendorf
  • Johann Wolfgang Goethe-University Hospital Frankfurt


Prof. Dr. med. Stefan R. Bornstein
Prof. Dr. med. Triantafyllos Chavakis
Prof. Graeme Eisenhofer, PhD

Description / aims

The proposed Clinical Research Unit (CRU), which will provide a comprehensive focus on the adrenal microenvironment in health and disease, depends crucially on scientific interactions and networking. The success of our integrative and multidisciplinary approach requires an efficient management of clinical studies and resources, including collections and sharing of uniquely linked patient data and human materials, together with availability to all CRU members of state-of-the-art analytical platforms and mouse models. The central administration of clinical protocols, patient data collection, biobanking, and complex genetically modified mouse models will accelerate research efforts and enhance collaborative synergisms. Of crucial importance, the central administration will strengthen the mentorship of young physician-scientists and promote equal opportunities by supporting the careers of female scientists and encouraging a family-friendly working atmosphere. This will be accomplished by establishing a network of administrative and support staff, Gerok physician-scientist positions, child care services, and training opportunities enhanced by organized seminar and lecture series and exchanges of personnel between the CRU and collaborating outside institutions.


Changes in morphology and function of adrenal cortex in mice fed a high-fat diet.
Swierczynska MM, Mateska I, Peitzsch M, Bornstein SR, Chavakis T, Eisenhofer G, Lamounier-Zepter V, Eaton S.
Int J Obes (Lond). 2015 Feb;39(2):321-30.

A defined, controlled culture system for primary bovine chromaffin progenitors reveals novel biomarkers and modulators.
Masjkur J, Levenfus I, Lange S, Arps-Forker C, Poser S, Qin N, Vukicevic V, Chavakis T, Eisenhofer G, Bornstein SR, Ehrhart-Bornstein M, Androutsellis-Theotokis A.
Stem Cells Transl Med. 2014 Jul;3(7):801-8.

Hypothalamo-pituitary and immune-dependent adrenal regulation during systemic inflammation.
Kanczkowski W, Alexaki VI, Tran N, Großklaus S, Zacharowski K, Martinez A, Popovics P, Block NL, Chavakis T, Schally AV, Bornstein SR.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2013 Sep 3;110(36):14801-6.