Berlin, 25th September 2018 – The inauguration ceremony of EU-OPENSCREEN ERIC took place at the Max Delbrück Center for Molecular Medicine in the Helmholtz Association in Berlin.
The inauguration ceremony was attended by Jean-Eric Paquet, Director-General for Research and Innovation of the European Commission, Georg Schütte, State Secretary of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, and Wolfgang Fecke, Director General of EU-OPENSCREEN ERIC. State Secretary Georg Schütte mentioned in his inaugural address, inter alia, expected socio-economic benefits of EU-OPENSCREEN and emphasized cooperation within distributed research infrastructure, as demonstrated by the example of the EU-OPENSCREEN European Chemical and Biological Database located at the Institute of Molecular Genetics of the Czech Academy of Sciences.
The research infrastructure EU-OPENSCREEN (European Infrastructure of Open Screening Platforms for Chemical Biology) was set up as European Research Infrastructure Consortium (EU-OPENSCREEN ERIC) by the European Commission’s Implementing Decision of 20th March 2018. The host country of EU-OPENSCREEN ERIC is Germany. The Czech Republic together with Finland, Latvia, Norway, Poland and Sweden are among the founding states. The observer is Denmark that will become a full Member in 2019. The legal framework of ERIC, established in 2009, enables research infrastructures a specific management and provides them with some benefits of international organizations (e.g. VAT or excise duties deduction). The EU-OPENSCREEN ERIC is one of 21 research infrastructures with the ERIC legal framework, with the Czech Republic being a Member of 12 of them.
The objective of EU-OPENSCREEN ERIC is to create and operate a distributed research infrastructure, which will support high-quality research on molecular mechanisms of biological processes, inter alia through the creation, development and management of a European chemical-biological library of compounds, a central database of results and providing high-quality services for users via open access mechanism. The Czech Republic participates in the EU-OPENSCREEN through the large research infrastructure CZ-OPENSCREEN (National Infrastructure of Chemical Biology), which is operated by the Institute of Molecular Genetics of the Czech Academy of Sciences. CZ-OPENSCREEN is focused on the identification of new molecular probes and tools for research and validation of compounds suitable for development of new drugs. Within its portfolio of activities CZ-OPENSCREEN also systematically builds a collection of compounds including both divers, commercially available compounds, and chemical compounds originally synthesized in the Czech Republic.