News from the Göttingen Campus

The US-American National Academy of Sciences has elected Patrick Cramer as Foreign Associate. The prestigious academy thus honors the biochemist for his outstanding research on a fundamental process of life – how cells read the information encoded in the genes and how this is regulated. (in German)
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Infection researchers from the German Primate Center identify starting points for vaccine development and therapy
The SARS coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infects lung cells and is responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic. The viral spike protein mediates entry of the virus into host cells and harbors an unusual activation sequence. The Infection Biology Unit of the German Primate Center (DPZ) - Leibniz Institute for Primate Research has now shown that this sequence is cleaved by the cellular enzyme furin and that the cleavage is important for the infection of lung…
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An analysis of 369 solar-like stars shows that solar brightness variations are extremely weak
The Sun is an ever-changing star: at times, numerous dark sunspots cover its visible surface; at others, the surface is completely "empty". However, by cosmic standards the Sun is extraordinarily monotonous. This is the result of a new study presented by researchers under the leadership of the Max Planck Institute for Solar System Research (MPS) in Germany in the upcoming issue of Science. For the first time, the scientists compared the Sun with…
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Research team with participation from the University of Göttingen unravels fighting techniques and traditions
Bronze is a relatively soft alloy and so it was often assumed that swords made of this material have usually only had a ceremonial or symbolic role. A new study by archaeologist Dr Raphael Hermann from the University of Göttingen, however, proves that such swords were resistant and suitable for combat. In fact, the research shows that Bronze Age swordsmen deliberately clashed blades with the opponent's sword and developed sophisticated fighting…
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Max Planck researchers solve structure of active viral copy machine
When someone becomes infected with the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, the pathogen proliferates rapidly in the cells of the infected person. To do so, the virus has to multiply its genetic material, which consists of a single long RNA strand. This task is performed by the viral 'copy machine', the so-called polymerase. Scientists led by Patrick Cramer of the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Göttingen have now visualized how the…
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"Amazon" for infection researchers
The Unit of Infection Biology headed by Stefan Pöhlmann has been researching on coronaviruses for many years. During the current COVID-19 pandemic, the department is becoming more and more an important node in the research on the virus. Scientists around the world appreciate the work of the laboratory and ask the researchers for material samples. Since mid-February, the department has already sent 253 samples to 22 countries. The majority of the…
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Research team with University of Göttingen participation investigates distances between production and consumption
In discussions about sustainability of food production and consumption, it is often suggested that the proportion of locally produced products should increase. However, it is largely unknown how high this share can be whilst still meeting current demands for food. An international research team led by the University of Aalto (Finland) with participation from the University of Göttingen has analysed data on food production and consumption. By…
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The corona pandemic increases xenophobia and exclusion worldwide
In the pandemic, populists and campaigners are currently stirring up prejudice against migrants and blaming them for the spread of the virus. The freedom of movement of refugees or certain ethnic groups is being restricted more drastically than that of the native population in order to prevent further spread of the disease - as it is officially called - but this also stigmatises those affected. Steven Vertovec, Director at the Max Planck…
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Göttingen agricultural economist evaluates research results on food security
Plant breeding has considerably increased agricultural yields in recent decades and thus made a major contribution to combating global hunger and poverty. At the same time, however, the intensification of farming has had negative environmental effects. Increases in food production will continue to be crucial for the future because the world population and demand continue to grow. A recent study by the University of Göttingen shows that new plant…
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The original idea of this day undergoes a change during Corona times
Today is International Laboratory Animal Day. Founded in 1962 by the British animal rights activist, Lady Dowding, it is intended to commemorate the fate of laboratory animals around the world. She has set this day of action in honour of her husband on his birthday - 24 April. Now, in the Corona Year, animal experiments are once again receiving special attention as new therapies against the virus are developed. Animal testing is a particularly…
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