The PLOID project

Back in 2020, the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) announced the programme entitled “Establishing German-Ukrainian Excellence Centers (CoE) in Ukraine.” The goal is to support the formation of German-Ukrainian Research Centers in Ukraine. The establishment of such centers aspires to encourage and strengthen collaboration between Ukrainian and German Research Institutions and promote the integration of Ukrainian scientists into the European Scientific Community.

The PLOID project – “Planning, Organization and Initiation of New Anti-Infective Discovery Core of Excellence” is devoted to the discovery of novel bioactive natural products from diverse bacterial sources. Such a discovery platform will be based on collaboration between Explogen and Helmholtz Institute for Pharmaceutical Research Saarland (HZI/HIPS, Germany). The project will deploy the novel methods of genomics and synthetic biology in order to reach for the chemical diversity encrypted in bacterial genomes. Additionally, it will create an excellent research environment for young Ukrainian Scientists willing to conduct their research in Ukraine.

PLOID is one of twelve competing projects selected for the second stage of the call. We hope that all Ukrainian participants of the call are safe and can work during these difficult times.

Despite the war, we continue our activities dedicated to PLOID. In July we held the first meeting of PLOID participants with Scientific Advisory Board members (Prof. Jozef Anne, Prof. Andreas Bechthold, Prof. Peter Leadlay) and potential stakeholders (BASF SE, PrJSC Enzym, YURiA-Pharm Corp). The general idea of the project, the details of the research plan and its outcomes as well as legal organization of the future center of excellence were discussed.

The next meeting will be held in either October or November 2022, in order to prepare the application for the second 48-month implementation stage of the call.