Underlining the unique quality of medical research at the University of Bern, two researchers receive a prestigious grant under two "Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs", which primarily support research in the USA.

The biomedical scientists Marianna Kruithof-de Julio and Robert Rieben were the only researchers in Switzerland to receive a grant from the American "Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs" (CDMRP), which provides grants on behalf of the US Department of Defense (DoD) to support medical research projects in numerous areas of biomedicine. Researchers apply for these grants in a highly competitive process.

An Extraordinary success for Bern

Only four CDMRP grants have been awarded to Switzerland in the past ten years – one of which went to another Bernese biomedical scientist, Adriano Taddeo, in 2017. From the current call, the two researchers from Bern were the only scientists from Switzerland to receive a grant: Robert Rieben from the Department for BioMedical Research (DBMR) at the University of Bern and Marianna Kruithof-de Julio from the DBMR and the Inselspital, Bern University Hospital.

"This is an extraordinary success for the University of Bern, as these are the only two researchers in Switzerland to receive an award in the fields of prostate cancer and reconstructive surgery," says Daniel Candinas, Vice-Rector for Research. Marianna Kruithof-de Julio’s project is one of nine that won against 149 applicants. Robert Rieben’s project is the only non-American project of the nine selected from a total of 119 applications. Marianna Kruithof-de Julio’s project will be supported with around $822.000 (equivalent to around 810.000 CHF) for a period of three years, and Robert Rieben’s will be supported by around $750.000 (equivalent to around 740.000 CHF) for three years.