InnoMuNiCH: German-Japanese Cooperation for the Advancement of Biomedical Innovations

The aim of the InnoMuNiCH project was to increase global innovations in the biopharmaceutical industry and to pool together German and Japanese expertise in research and development. InnoMuNiCH stands for “Innovations through Munich-Nippon Cooperations in Healthcare”.

The project was funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) as part of the funding program “Internationalization of Leading-Edge Clusters, Forward-Looking Projects and Other, Comparable Networks”.

During 2017, in a one-year conception phase, an internationalization concept was developed in cooperation with the Japanese partner regions Osaka and Kawasaki. In order to intensify industrial and research contacts, two joint R&D projects were also designed and submitted for funding. These multi-year German-Japanese R&D cooperations started in 2018 in the implementation phase of the project.

InnoMuNiCH Cooperation Platform

InnoMuNiCH project

The ability to effectively translate the findings of academic research into pharmaceutical products is challenging for global health research. As many research findings are usually not directly applicable to major industry projects, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can function as catalysts in this context. SMEs may significantly increase the process of innovation by advancing projects successively.

The InnoMuNiCH project was funded by the BMBF and managed by BioM. InnoMuNiCH links pharmaceutical companies, research groups and biomedical SMEs from Japan with cooperation partners in Munich, Bavaria and beyond. Moreover, the project provides a platform for German-Japanese cooperation to initiate and foster binational research and development projects. Both, German and Japanese players will profit from this cooperation between partners on equal terms.

In accordance with the future strategy of the Munich biotechnology cluster, the thematic focus of InnoMuNiCH lies on the Medicine of the Future. This includes personalized medicine and novel developments in the areas of immune modulation, virally induced cancer, cell and gene therapy, but also the development of innovative "small molecule" active ingredients.

BioM Cluster Management and Japan

Since 2010, BioM has built a long-lasting and trusting relationship with Japan. BioM organizes trade missions for Bavarian companies, represents Bavaria at Japanese trade fairs and maintains close contacts with key Japanese regions and experts. BioM and Osaka BioHeadquarters signed an official cooperation agreement in 2011, which gets renewed regularly. Within the scope of the InnoMuNiCH project, an MoU was also signed with Kawasaki City in 2017. The agreements are the basis for ongoing, diverse and fruitful B2B working relationships with both regions.

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Dr. Stephanie Wehnelt
Dr. Stephanie Wehnelt

Head of International Affairs