The Institute of Veterinary Anatomy trains students of veterinary medicine in the subjects of anatomy, histology, and embryology. In anatomy class the students are taught the shape, location, and structure of organs and tissues of the bodies of domestic mammals, birds, and reptiles. In histology class the tissues and cells of the organism are examined with a microscope. Embryology studies the development of the body beginning with the fertilized egg. In addition to traditional lessons and applied clinical labs, there is also a virtual laboratory available for dissecting and microscopy. At the Institute teaching and research are closely linked.
The research focus of the Institute is the blood vessel system. How blood vessels develop and how their growth can be regulated is analyzed. The experiments are performed on cell cultures. Such in vitro models are an alternative to animal experiments.
The Institute houses an extensive collection of anatomical specimens and the Gurlt Collection, which is focused on malformations.
At the Institute of Veterinary Physiology research and teaching are devoted to recognizing and describing the life processes in veterinary relevant species.
As a branch of biology, physiology (Old Greek: physis, 'nature' and logos 'doctrine') is the study of the physical and biochemical processes in the cells, tissues, and organs. In physiology classes, students of veterinary medicine learn about the interaction of life processes and metabolic processes in the entire organism. For the future veterinarian, it is also important to gain an understanding of the differences in life processes of different domestic animals. For example, the dog, cattle, pig, and chicken differ considerably in the sub-processes of respiration, digestion, and reproduction.
In modern veterinary medicine, it is increasingly important to accurately assign the function and malfunction of life processes to individual molecules, for example, transport or receptor proteins. (...)
At the Institute of Veterinary Biochemistry basic research in veterinary medicine is performed using innovative analytical methods. The research focuses on the areas of reproductive biology, in vitro cell systems, diagnostics, food-related responses of the gut, and cellular regulation. The Institute is a founding member of the Alliance for Competence in Reproductive Biology (ReProTier).
The main focus of teaching at the Institute is on biochemistry for students of veterinary medicine. In the biochemistry lab course, third-semester students conduct practical lab experiments. Other topics that are taught include the theory of the molecular biology of reproduction, fundamentals of organic chemistry, practical beekeeping for veterinarians, and a specialized lecture series in Animal Biochemistry.
The Institute of Animal Nutrition investigates animal nutrition in six main research areas. The main emphasis is on the digestive physiology of animals, the effect of feed additives on the growth and health of animals, as well as the hitherto little explored field of nutrition effects on the immune system of domestic animals.
The role of intestinal bacteria is investigated in the field of gastrointestinal microbiology using molecular methods. Possible alternatives to the use of antibiotics in food are explored in the groups working on pro-and prebiotics.
Within the Collaborative Research Group (SFB) 852 “Nutrition and Intestinal Microbiota – Host Interactions in the Pig” there are 16 sub-projects exploring issues such as the effect of dietary factors on intestinal function or animal health in pigs.
The Dahlemer Diätikseminaren is a series the Institute offers on animal nutrition in practice. Owners of pets and livestock owners can get advice about animal nutrition.
At the Institute of Virology veterinary students are taught the basics of virology and given an understanding of viral infections and the basics of viral diagnostics.
In four working groups the causes and treatment of viral diseases are explored, for example, the emergence and reproduction of certain herpes viruses in different animal species. The Institute has cooperation partners in many countries in Europe and Asia, especially China, and the United States.
The Institute provides diagnostic services with a focus on the detection of viral infections in horses.
At the Institute of Immunology, the interactions between potential pathogens for the organisms of animals are investigated. The focus is on the reaction of the immune system. The works at the Institute helps to understand disease processes and to develop new therapeutic approaches.
The teaching at the Institute focuses on the areas of general immunology, specialized immunology, and infection immunology.
The aim of the research at the Institute is to understand the mechanisms of immune regulation developed from pathogens and to use this knowledge to develop new strategies to combat infections. In addition, the work of the Institute aims to demonstrate new approaches to modulate inflammatory processes in humans and animals that can be used to alleviate or cure immune disorders.
The Institute of Microbiology and Epizootics (IMT) is a research and educational institute that performs microbiological services for academic institutions as well as for private practitioners, clinics, and pathologists.
The research includes all aspects of bacterial animal diseases and zoonotic pathogens. The main research focuses are the establishment of molecular diagnostics and molecular methods to kinship analysis, population genetics of bacterial pathogens, and experimental studies on the pathogenesis of infectious diseases in respective different hosts. The Institute is involved in several national and international research networks.
The focus of research at the Institute of Food Hygiene is on food microbiology. The Institute supervises molecular epidemiology studies. In addition, strategies are developed that are intended to reduce selected zoonotic pathogens in the food chain. This includes the use of probiotics and bacteriophages.
One research group at the Institute studies Campylobacter bacteria, a group of zoonotic agents that are transmitted via food and can cause inflammatory diarrhea in humans. The Vibrio research group studies Vibrio, bacteria that are found in coastal waters or fish farms and worldwide are increasingly causing more infections after the consumption of fish and seafood.
The Institute of Food Hygiene carries out microbiological, sensory, and histological studies for the scientific institutions of the Department of Veterinary Medicine and for private customers and companies. It has been registered as an accredited testing laboratory since 1999. It also conducts official cross-sample tests (microbiological and histological) and formulates expert assessments.
The subjects taught at the Department of Animal and Environmental Hygiene include hygiene, animal welfare, environmental protection, consumer protection, hygiene in animal husbandry, veterinary clinics, and small animal practices, drinking water hygiene, and interactions between animals and the environment.
Research is conducted on disinfectants, infectious diseases, livestock hygiene, and environmental sanitation. The various topics are investigated in groups at the institute as well as nationwide in interdisciplinary research collaborations.
The Institute provides services according to the guidelines of the German Veterinary Medical Association in the areas of food, veterinary practice, and livestock. These services include the detection of Salmonella or multidrug-resistant bacteria, microbial feed evaluation, and tests on disinfectants.
The Institute of Animal Welfare and Behavior at the Department of Veterinary Medicine was established in 2014. Researchers at the institute deal with scientific issues related to animal welfare and refinement, e.g., within a subproject of the BB3R graduate program.
Animal welfare as a subject combines the areas of veterinary medicine, ethics, and law. Ethology (the study of animal behavior) is of key importance for the practical veterinary examination and the basis of behavior therapy. Laboratory animal science concentrates on the characteristics of animal types that are most commonly used in laboratory experiments.
The institute performs the function of animal welfare officer at Freie Universität. Anyone at Freie Universität who wishes to do animal testing or to make use of vertebrate animals for any scientific purposes, is required to get information about the applicable local laws before starting the work or acquiring the animals. The animal welfare officers at the Institute for Animal Welfare and Behavior support and advise researchers on the design, application, implementation, and reporting on animal experiments. Optional courses are taught so that researchers can acquire the necessary expertise.
Teaching and research at the Institute of Veterinary Pathology focus on causes, mechanisms, and diagnostic features of diseases in pet, domestic, zoo, and wild animals. In addition to veterinary students, participants in the MS program on toxicology and equine sciences are trained in relevant aspects of pathology as well. The diagnostic services comprise necropsies and biopsy examinations to identify tissue changes and diseases in living and deceased animals, including pet, livestock, zoo, and wild animal species.
The main areas of research include specific aspects of oncology and the study of diseases of domestic animals and select wild animals. In joint research projects sponsored by the German Research Foundation (DFG), critical aspects of pneumonia and the interaction of nanoparticles with cells and tissues in the body are addressed.
As the only Institute of Veterinary Pathology in Germany, we offer a ScanScope service with a fully digitized microscope. (...)
The Institute of Parasitology and Tropical Veterinary Medicine studies the living conditions and environmental conditions of parasites and their hosts. In addition, curricula in tropical veterinary medicine and other related issues are addressed. The main focus is on epidemiology and the diagnosis, treatment, and control of parasitic diseases in ruminants, dogs, cats, and horses.
The scientific infrastructure of the Institute is aligned around numerous classical parasitological, molecular, serological, and cell biological approaches. The Institute conducts parasitological tests for the scientific institutions of the Department of Veterinary Medicine, as well as for practicing veterinarians and veterinary clinics. With the tests they can detect ectoparasites, those that live on the surface of the host, such as fleas and ticks, and endoparasites, those that live inside the host, such as worms.
At the Institute of Pharmacology and Toxicology students gain a basic understanding of various forms of therapy as well as knowledge about the effects, production, and use of medication. They also learn laws applicable to medication and narcotics.
One focus of research at the Institute is neuropsychopharmacology. This includes the mechanism of action of psychotropic drugs and neurobiological bases of certain behaviors, behavioral disorders, and diseases. The second main focus of research is neuropharmacology. In this area of research, abnormal changes in the body (pathophysiology) and the treatment of common neurological diseases, such as Parkinson’s, are explored.
During the semester there is a monthly colloquium – with talks and papers on current aspects of pharmacological research and related disciplines such as physiology or behavioral biology. (...)
The Institute of Poultry Diseases is one of five clinics in the Department of Veterinary Medicine. It has four divisions: bacteriology; parasitology; virology; and ornamental, zoo, and wild birds.
The Institute offers various services in the field of animal welfare and consumer protection. These include the testing of new vaccines and drugs as well as the testing of vaccines for poultry and vaccines for humans that are prepared using chicken eggs or chicken cell cultures. In the clinic diseases of ornamental, zoo, and wild birds can be diagnosed. Wild birds that are ill or maimed can be operated on and cared for until they regain their health.
The scientists provide consulting services for animal owners and veterinarians with regard to holding animals, animal welfare, and the prevention of all poultry diseases. Veterinarians can receive training to become specialists in poultry diseases or obtain the additional designation of "species protection."
The Institute for Veterinary Epidemiology and Biostatistics was established at the beginning of 2014. Scientists at the institute address issues, for example, with regard to the occurrence of diseases in animal populations and their influencing factors. The work includes the planning of epidemiological studies, the creation of databases, and the statistical analysis of the data.
The institute is responsible for the biostatistics lecture in the 2nd semester of the veterinary curriculum and contributes to additional veterinary public health (VPH) courses in higher semesters. The institute is involved in bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degree programs as well as the operation of a residency program of the European College of Veterinary Public Health (ECVPH).
In cooperation with the statistical consulting unit of Freie Universität Berlin (fu:stat), the institute offers an epidemiological project consulting service that includes study design, sample size calculations, data collection, and study evaluation. The aim is to provide researchers of the Department of Veterinary Medicine with professional support in the planning, implementation, and evaluation of their research projects.
The Equine Clinic of Freie Universität is staffed 24 hours a day and has five departments: Orthopedics and Surgery, Internal Medicine, Imaging, Reproductive Medicine, and Ophthalmology.
Besides teaching and research, the clinic offers a diverse and extensive range of diagnostic and therapeutic options for horses and other equines. The clinic regularly organizes advanced training for Germans and international participants.
The clinic is also a recognized training center for veterinarians and residents of the following European Colleges: ECVS, ECEIM, ECVDI, ECAR, ECVO. The associated shoeing smith school (Hufbeschlagschule Berlin) is nationally certified and offers statutory introductory and preparatory courses with subsequent regulatory inspection for becoming certified as a shoeing smith.
The Clinic for Ruminants and Swine with its six departments addresses animal health issues in cattle, small ruminants, and pigs. The research done at the Clinic focuses mainly on aspects of animal welfare and the improvement of animal health in the livestock sector.
Animal patients from surrounding farms suffering from surgical and internal diseases can be treated at the Animal Hospital in the Clinic for Ruminants and Swine. Outpatient care is available for the farms in the region. The Diagnostic Service deals with problems in livestock animals and can be consulted by independently working veterinarians. The Swine Clinic is a multidisciplinary clinic available to commercial and private owners of swine.
The Animal Reproduction Clinic consists of three divisions: small animals, horses, cattle and small ruminants. The small animals group is specialized in the breeding of dogs, cats, and rabbits. Within this division specific tests and treatments are done for male and female animals. Veterinary obstetrics is also available. The division provides consulting services and training for veterinarians and breeders and regularly conducts clinical trials on practical issues concerning dogs, cats, and rabbits.
The cattle and small ruminants group advises cattle-holding farms with problems in the field of animal health, fertility, and fertility management. A particular focus is on udder health, which plays a prominent role in the production of milk. The team advises veterinarians and farmers, focusing on the causes of problems at farms.
Besides its activities in teaching and research, the Small Animal Clinic is actively involved in patient care: about 20,000 dogs, cats, and exotic animals are treated there every year. The Small Animal Clinic has 16 divisions including surgery, cardiology, dermatology, and dentistry. The Animal Hospital has a station for dogs and cats, an intensive care station, and a separate station for animals from shelters. The inpatients are cared for around the clock.
The clinic has an in-house pharmacy, as well as a blood donor service for dogs and for cats. Outside its regular office hours, the clinic provides a 24-hour emergency service, where animals with sudden life-threatening diseases can be treated.
The clinic has an advanced radiation therapy device available for use with small pets which, among other things, makes possible the precise irradiation of tumors.
Image Credit: Institut für Anatomie
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