Oswalt Foundation

Oswalt Foundation

Promotion of basic structural and functional research in biology and medicine

January 23, 2020

Without the Oswalt Foundation, the Max Planck Institute of Biophysics would probably not have survived the difficult financial situation after the Second World War. To this day, the foundation continues to support research on membrane proteins, which are very important for drug development.

March 3, 2020 - Entry in the Golden Book of the City of Frankfurt's Foundations. From the left: City Councilor Dr. Bernd Heidenreich, Prof. Dr. Vadim Oswalt, Prof. Dr. Ernst Bamberg, Walter Rau. (Photo: Paolo Lastrico)

The Max Planck Institute of Biophysics emerged from the "Oswalt Foundation - Institute for the Physical Foundations of Medicine".

100 years Oswalt foundation in 2021

Friedrich Dessauer (1881 - 1963) saw a high potential in radiation research for medical benefit in the discovery of X-rays. He devoted himself intensively to this field of research and developed devices for medical application.

Henry Oswalt (1849 - 1934) and friends of the applied sciences from the Frankfurt citizenry made it possible with their donations in 1920/21 to establish an institute for Friedrich Dessauer, which was initially located at the Goethe University.

After the emigration of Friedrich Dessauer in 1934, Boris Rajewsky (1893 -1974) took over the management and then proceeded to integrate the Institute, which was hardly viable politically and financially, into the Kaiser-Wilhelm-Gesellschaft zur Förderung der Wissenschaften e.V..

With the founding of the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute for Biophysics in 1937, a new research direction was established. With interdisciplinary research approaches, the Max Planck Institute of Biophysics still investigates the building blocks of life, their structure, function and interactions.

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