Else Kröner Graduate Schools for Medical Students

Excellent Scientific Training for Doctoral Candidates: EKFS wants to support medical faculties in Germany, in particular to arouse the enthusiasm of talented medical students who are interested in scientific research activities and win them over for this type of research.
Excellent Scientific Training for Doctoral Candidates

The Else Kröner Graduate Schools for Medical Students offer the scholars the opportunity to focus entirely on their thesis for at least one year in a scientifically promising research project – embedded in an inspirational environment with experienced and committed supervisors.

In order to participate, both the supervisors and the scholars must qualify in a careful selection process. The major objective: To achieve results within the scope of the doctoral thesis, which meets with international and scientific response in the form of a lead author paper.

The maximum funding volume per doctoral study programme and location amounts to €900,000 for three years, with the option of a second period.

Please also note our current call for proposal.

Submitting the Paper of the Month:
We invite all project managers, fellowship recipients and members of graduate study programs to submit their publications that have emerged from funding as Paper of the Month. You can find more information here. You can find an overview of the Paper of the Month here.  


Portrait Dr. Alexander Lehmann
Dr. Alexander Lehmann
Scientific Funding: Graduate and Research Schools and International Research Prize

Class of 2020

Following a two-stage selection process, in this year’s call for proposals the following three locations were chosen, each of which initially receives funding in the amount of EUR 900,000 for three years.

Funding Research on Inflammation (LMU Munich)

Funding Research on Inflammation

Besides infectious pathogens, a broad spectrum of non-infectious causes for inflammatory reactions exists as well. The graduate study program “FöFoLe-Inflammation” makes this the starting point and is going to strengthen the outstanding research on inflammation on the LMU campus in the case of infectious and non-infectious diseases. The opportunity to take part in “FöFoLe-Inflammation” is provided to project managers in many specialized areas and to students with very different clinical interests. The graduate study program also offers a training program based on educational research and includes inter alia activities toward the further development of students’ personalities in becoming researching physicians.

Proposers: Spokesman Prof. Dr. Hans-Joachim Anders is head of nephrology at “Klinikum Innenstadt”, the inner-city clinic location at LMU. Envisaged as deputy spokespersons are Prof. Dr. Barbara Schraml (Walter Brendel Centre of Experimental Medicine), Prof. Dr. med. Thomas Gudermann (Walter Straub Institute of Pharmacology and Toxicology), and Prof. Dr. med. Veit Hornung (Immunobiochemistry, Gene Center at LMU).

Here you can find further information.

Digital Transformation in Medicine (MHH Hannover Medical School)

Digital Transformation in Medicine (DigiStrucMed)

Digital transformation makes it necessary to address issues which arise due to digitalization in diagnostics and therapy. This applies to to medical training and research as well. With DigiStrucMed, an innovative structure involving collaboration between medicine and computer science is going to come about on the part of MHH and its cooperation partners from the informatics departments at the Technical University Braunschweig and Leibniz University Hannover. Research issues close to clinical practice will be worked on jointly by medical students in the course of getting their medical degree and by informatics students in the course of getting their master’s degree. In the process the fellows profit from a training program which, alongside general competencies, primarily depicts subject matter dealing with digitalization.

Proposers: Spokesman Prof. Dr. Michael Heuser is senior physician at the Clinic for Hematology, Hemostaseology, Oncology and Stem Cell Transplantation at MHH. Deputy spokespersons are Prof. Dr. Dr. Michael Marschollek (Peter L. Reichertz Institute for Medical Informatics at TU Braunschweig and MHH) and Prof. Dr. Felicitas Thol, (Hematology, Hemostaseology, Oncology and Stem Cell Transplantation, MHH).

Here you can find further information.

Rethinking Health: Healthcare and Prevention Research (Charité Medical School Berlin)

Rethinking Health: Healthcare and Prevention Research

The Else Kröner graduate study program “Rethinking Health” is going to close the crucial gap between studying for a medical degree and academic careers, and introduces medical students to a substantial scientific activity at an early stage. Accordingly, the graduate study program provides a hook-up at the location to the BIH Charité Clinician Scientist Program, which has been readily established for years at Charité and the Berlin Institute of Health (BIH). Embedded into the “Strategy Charité 2030”, the graduate study program endeavors to attain a new scientific understanding of the condition “health” as an active process driven by mechanisms belonging to continuous adaptation to the environment (microbiome, nutrition, etc.). A better understanding of such health-preserving signaling networks that increase fitness and disease resilience in a species is intended to lead to the identification of molecular target structures for prevention. Additionally, there is a mentoring program for female physicians aimed at raising the number of female physicians appointed to professorships to an above-average level in the coming years.

Proposers: Spokesman Prof. Dr. Andreas Diefenbach is director of the Institute of Microbiology, Infectious Diseases and Immunology at Charité. Envisaged as deputy spokespersons are Prof. Dr. Chiara Romagnani (DRFZ German Rheumatism Research Center and Department of Gastroenterology, Infectiology and Rheumatology) and Prof. Dr. Felix Knauf (Department of Nephrology and Medical Intensive Care).

Here you can find further information.

Class of 2017 (Extension 2021)

Four Else Kröner graduate study programs at the locations Göttingen, Hamburg, Heidelberg and Jena were approved in 2017. At the end of the initial three-year funding period, in accordance with the call for proposals the four graduate study programs had the opportunity to apply for a second funding phase for another three years.

Genome Dynamics and Epigenomics (Göttingen)

University Medical Center Göttingen

Spokesman: Prof. Dr. Matthias Dobbelstein

The Else Kröner graduate study program “Genome Dynamics and Epigenomics” promotes high-achieving medical students with an interest in biomedical research. The program supports them in their intention to accomplish a demanding doctoral thesis in experimental medicine parallel to their studies. This is made possible via networking events, course offers and fellowships for sabbatical semesters to carry out research.

You can find more information here.

iPRIME: Innovative doctoral sponsorship in the field of translational inflammation research (Hamburg)

University Hospital Hamburg-Eppendorf

Spokesman: Prof. Dr. Tobias B. Huber

An innovative doctoral sponsorship in the field of translational inflammation research has been brought to life with the Else Kröner graduate study program iPRIME. Interdisciplinary projects from the areas of organ-specific and organ-transcending immune response in the kidney, liver, CNS, intestine and maternal-fetal medicine are worked on using the latest technologies and resolved all the way to the single-cell level.

You can find more information here.

Graduate School of Global Health (Heidelberg)

Heidelberg University Hospital

Spokesman: Extracurricular Prof. Dr. Volker Winkler

The “Heidelberg Graduate School of Global Health”  is the first of its kind regarding the subject of global health in Germany and consequently breaking key new ground. In this graduate study program doctoral candidates are trained and receive advanced training to meet the growing demand for global health researchers. To accomplish this a demanding, internationally competitive  curriculum has been developed which, among other facets, directly strengthens field research, too.

You can find more information here.

JSAM: Jena School for Ageing Medicine (Jena)

Jena University Hospital

Spokesman: Prof. Dr. Otto Witte

The “Jena School for Ageing Medicine” (JSAM) prepares young physicians for demanding clinical- scientific activity in geriatric medicine. Targets for interventional strategies are studied in the projects, strategies that counteract old-age-related dysfunctions in the realm of cellular and systemic function within different organ systems (e.g. brain, blood, blood vessels, muscle and liver).

You can find more information here.

Class of 2014

BonnNi: Doctoral Study Program in Neuroimmunology (Bonn)

University Hospital Bonn

Spokesman: Prof. Dr. Albert Becker

You can find the project presentation here.   

More information at https://www.bonnni.de/

KlinStrucMed: Clinically structured doctoral candidate training (Hanover)

MHH Hannover Medical School

Spokespersons: Prof. Dr. Karin Weissenborn and Prof. Dr. Markus Cornberg

You can find the project presentation here.

More information at https://www.klinstrucmed.de

Doctoral Study Program in Translational Medicine (Munich)

Technical University of Munich

Spokesman: Prof. Dr. Dirk Busch

More information at http://www.mgc.med.tum.de

Class of 2014

Carus Doctoral Study Program (Dresden, funding expired)

Dresden University of Technology

Spokesman: Prof. Dr. Andreas Deußen

More information at https://tu-dresden.de/med/mf/cpk

ELAN: “Laboratory and Science” training program for next-generation physicians (Essen, funding expired)

University of Duisburg-Essen

Spokeswoman: Prof. Dr. Ursula Rauen

More information at https://www.uni-due.de/med/elan/index

MOTI-VATE: Medical Faculty Doctoral Study Program (Freiburg, funding expired)

Albert Ludwigs University of Freiburg

Spokespersons: Prof. Dr. Heike Pahl and Prof. Dr. Robert Thimme

More information at https://www.med.uni-freiburg.de/de/verwaltung/akademische-angelegenheiten/promotionen/moti-vate/moti-vate