Friedrich Merz Guest Professorship Extended by Five Years
“A contribution to the development of our society and to the well-being of the community”
Merz will extend the Friedrich Merz Guest Professorship by another five years. The purpose of the venerable Guest Professorship is to invite a highly respected scientist from the field of pharmaceuticals or human medicine to work at Frankfurt’s Goethe University each year. The contract extension underlines Merz’s commitment to enhancing medical and pharmaceutical research at Goethe University and to facilitating new contacts with researchers and research groups.
“With the extension of the Guest Professorship, we are also continuing part of our family tradition,” explained Andreas Meyer, member of the Merz Shareholders’ Council and the shareholder families, at the signing of the contract in the Goethe University guest house on December 3. Dr. Jochen Hückmann, grandson of the company founder Friedrich Merz, initiated the Friedrich Merz Guest Professorship in 1985 as a permanent contribution to fostering scientific development in the fields of pharmacy and medicine. Hückmann himself led the Merz family business for more than three decades and developed it into an internationally successful pharmaceutical company. “He has always considered his grandfather a role model, not only in his capacity as an entrepreneur, but also as a patron of the sciences,” said Meyer. “We are committed to this tradition. The purpose of the Guest Professorship is to make a positive contribution to the development of our society and to the well-being of the community.”
On behalf of the Goethe University, Vice President Professor Manfred Schubert-Zsilavecz also particularly welcomes the continuation of the successful cooperation, being a pharmacist himself: “The Friedrich Merz Guest Professorship is one of the oldest at our university. Over the past 30 years, it has brought many high-ranking international experts to our university.”
At the center of the Friedrich Merz Guest Professorship is an international and interdisciplinary symposium dedicated to the research focus of the visiting professor. At a public forum, the research topic is also communicated in a way that is comprehensible to the interested public.
The current appointment of the American cell biologist Donald E. Ingber is a highlight in the history of the Friedrich Merz Guest Professorship. The Professor for Bioengineering at Harvard University, Cambridge, MA, studies miniaturized living organ systems consisting of human cells. These can be used to study diseases, test new therapeutic options, and obviate animal testing.
At the public forum on Thursday, December 6, citizens will have the chance to participate in a discussion with Professor Ingber and other experts on the topic “Human organs and diseases in a test tube: Fiction, or a realistic alternative to animal testing?” This will cover issues such as: How valid is animal testing really? Which human organs can be replicated in a test tube, and how can science profit from them? How can the future of personalized medicine with patients’ own personal organ systems be shaped? The public forum, which is free of charge, will be held in the Arkadensaal of the Goethe House (Grosser Hirschgraben 23-25 in Frankfurt) beginning at 6 p.m.
More information on the Friedrich Merz Guest Professorship can be found at: http://www.goethe-university-frankfurt.de/Friedrich-Merz-Visiting-Fellowship-Endowment?locale=en .
The Friedrich Merz Guest Professorship
The Friedrich Merz Guest Professorship, endowed in December of 1985 on the occasion of the 100th birthday of the eponymous company founder, is one of the oldest chairs for visiting professors at Frankfurt’s Goethe University. Friedrich Merz was one of the first members of the Senckenbergische Gesellschaft and thus had close ties with the Goethe University in Frankfurt and was a patron of science. The purpose of the Guest Professorship is to invite a highly respected scientist from the field of pharmaceuticals or human medicine to work at Frankfurt’s Goethe University each year. Awarded for the first time in 1987, it has been awarded every year since then, with just two exceptions. Alongside the symposium, which presents a spectrum of topics ranging from basic research to health care research, the Guest Professorship offers researchers from both the academic world and the industry the opportunity to participate in an annual exchange of knowledge and to build a foundation for further collaboration in the future.
Merz is a global, family-owned aesthetics and neurotoxin company based in Frankfurt, Germany. Privately held for 110 years, the company is distinguished by its commitment to innovation, long-term perspective, and focus on profitable growth. In addition to its comprehensive portfolio of aesthetic and skincare products, Merz also develops neurotoxin therapy to treat neurologically-induced movement disorders. In fiscal year 2017/18, Merz generated revenue of EUR 1,024.4 million. The Merz Group has a workforce of 3,151 employees and a direct presence in 28 countries. More information is available at www.merz.com.
Press Release Friedrich Merz Guest Professorship Extended by Five Years EN [ 437 KB]
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