The journey has begun, starting with a workshop – Reproduction.MS

Using our CRU326 'Male Germ Cells: from Genes to Function' as a blueprint, we have just started our journey towards a a local 'Sonderforschungsbereich' (SFB) as future perspective for reproductive research in Münster.

To spread the word and get into contact with local groups interested in this field of research, we set-up a website and launched open call to encouraging our colleagues at the University of Münster to take part in the Reproduction.MS initiative. Finally, this effort kick-started on June 24th to 25th with a two-day virtual workshop: REPROduction.MS: from Genes to Molecules and Function aiming to identify and bring together groups (and projects) that could participate in this SFB initiative, and to drive the definition of research areas, core projects, and technologies. The workshop programme involved a total of twelve sessions with almost forty speakers, one invited guest speaker, and a keynote lecture. With talks like 'How to become a sperm cell?', 'Explaining the facts of life to a computer', or 'The maths of directed movements', a potpourri of scientific topics across many disciplines was offered!

The presentations and/or comments by the representatives of the University (Univ.-Prof. Dr. Monika Stoll), Medical Faculty (Univ.-Prof. Dr. Luisa Klotz), and DFG (Dr. Sigrid Ziegler) highlighted their interest in and their support for the SFB initiatives. Prof. Dr. Kay Elder from Cambridge, UK, concluded the workshop providing a keynote lecture on the historical perspectives of in vitro culture of human preimplantation embryos. Of course, the social factor was not neglected– a truly magical, family-friendly surprise was included by the performance of Madou Mann, the youngest professional magician in Germany!

The workshop’s motto Join. Talk. Collaborate. was more than complied and it seemed truly a pleasure for all – almost 100 – participants that took part in this first step towards a collaborative research centre! We are looking forward to everything that will follow, and we are more than convinced that we will be able to elaborate an outstanding SFB application – together, with great people and amazing science. Stay tuned about further progresses, details, and highlights at