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Funder/CentreAustrian Academy of Sciences
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Austrian Academy of Sciences

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Austrian Academy of SciencesResearch Funder/Centre

Type of institution

Funding centre



Founded in 1847, and presently employing more than 1100 people, the Austrian Academy of Sciences is funded by the Federal Government. Its mission is to support all fields of science, with an emphasis upon basic research. It is a leading research, and research funding, institution in Austria and a key funder of ageing research. The Academy's research programme is strategically planned through the funding of research institutes, units and commissions, as well as within a framework of research programmes and collaborations with national and international institutions.


Since the late 1980s, a strategically planned programme on ageing research has been a thematic priority. The programme focuses upon basic biomedical research on ageing and led to the foundation of the Institute for Biomedical Aging Research (IBA) in Innsbruck in 1992. The IBA has the following specific research goal: To help to prevent age-related functional losses. Such losses are, for instance, alterations of the skin (wrinkles), lower muscle tonus, decreasing function of the sensory organs (eyes, ears) and of the vascular and the immune systems. This is where gerontology needs to analyze aging processes at a cellular level and to elaborate the mechanisms which are responsible for these age-related dysfunctions. Measures that decelerate age-related functional impairments will improve the quality of life in old age. Aim to fight age-related diseases: such as infections, urogenital tract diseases, tumors, Alzheimer's dementia and atherosclerosis. A better knowledge of the aging process of each organ system is a prerequisite for the prevention and healing of these conditions. The results will also be applicable for the development of new diagnostic tools and therapeutics. Total budget for 2007: 3.9 million Euro (2.172 million Euro by the Austrian Academy of Sciences, the rest by additional funding).

Main research areas

The Institute conducts ageing research in the following four divisions: Pathology, Immunology, Endocrinology and Molecular and Cell Biology. The OeAW also funds the Vienna Demography Institute, which regularly undertakes research into ageing. Its age-related research focuses on the description, analysis and projection of the age structure of the Austrian population, the demographic structure, living arrangements and health status of the elderly population and the consequences of demographic ageing for economic, social and health policy. Focus also lies on the analysis of intergenerational relations, attitudes towards policy on ageing and retirement and preferences for living as an elderly person. The scientific activities of every OeaW research institute are reviewed yearly by a board of national and international experts (Kuratorium)



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