Philipp Lachenmann: DELPHI Rationale


Scientific Symposia 2016

Science & Society Session “Ethical Dimensions in Clinical Trials”

29.09.2016, Berlin | Poverty-related diseases and neglected tropical diseases continue to cause major health problems with enormous social consequences. New strategies and research approaches to fight these diseases are urgently required. Clinical trials to research and develop novel drugs and vaccines are an essential part of this endeavor. These studies, however, also raise ethical issues, for example, with regard to financial compensation for trial participation and the potential risk of acquiring natural infections during trials in developing countries. On October 24, 2016, the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina, the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf) and the Max Planck Institute for Infection Biology (MPI-IB), with support from the Ernst Schering Foundation, organize a Science & Society Session at the MPI-IB in Berlin to discuss these ethical issues with German and African representatives from science, politics and society.

(c) Leopoldina



Pneumonia – A Common Disease

01.09.2016, Berlin | Community-acquired pneumonia (CAP) is one of the most common diseases and in the same league as heart attacks or strokes. In Germany, more than 240,000 patients are hospitalized every year because of CAP, 12 percent of which die. Every year, over seven times more people die from CAP than from traffic accidents. Globally, CAP is the cause of death for more children until the age of six than malaria, HIV, and measles combined. This topic is the focus of a public Science & Society Session “Community-Acquired Pneumonia,” which takes place at the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities (BBAW) on September 16, 2016.

 3D-Spektral Imaging von lebenden menschlichen Lungenalveolen (© Andreas Hocke)



The Future of Life Is Synthetic: The Promises of Xenobiology

26.04.2016, Berlin | Synthetic biology has been heralded as an exciting new field which will allow a deeper knowledge on how living systems “work.” Synthetic biologists extensively manipulate organisms at the DNA level. It even seems possible nowadays to bring lost-lost species such as the woolly mammoth back to life from recovered DNA samples. The xenobiologists go even further, aiming to create artificial life from synthetic chemicals instead of natural DNA. Such new biologies promise groundbreaking solutions to pressing global problems. However, these possibilities have raised concern about their future environmental and societal impact and how they might change the way we think about life, biodiversity, and evolution. On May 25, 2016, an interdisciplinary Science & Society Session at the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities (BBAW) will bring together renowned experts from xenobiology and the philosophy of the life sciences to explore these and other matters of humanly-created life.