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Ionizing radiation is a component of both natural and man-made environments. The relationship between the risks and the benefits of exposure to these sources of radiation is continually being redefined by technological developments and by shifts in the needs and expectations of our dynamic society.

Helmholtz Zentrum München is an internationally recognized center of excellence for research and training in the radiation sciences and acts as an independent advisor to governmental and international bodies. The Department of Radiation Sciences works in cooperation with the Center’s partners and the Munich universities on a research program designed to develop new biomedical applications of radiation and to improve the quality of radiological protection.

Diagnostic imaging
Our goal is to develop technological and mathematical tools that increase the level of information obtained from diagnostic imaging methods, including computed tomography, digital radiography, and nuclear medicine while at the same time reducing the radiation exposure to patients.

Tumor therapy
Radiation is an effective tool for tumor treatment, but damage to normal tissues and the development of radiation resistance still limit the potential. Our goals are to better understand the complex interactions of radiation with both normal and malignant tissues, to develop combinatorial therapies using small molecules, and to identify predictive markers of the therapy response.

Radiation protection
The biological impact of radiation on human health is still poorly understood, and debate rages over the risks of exposure to low doses. Our efforts here concentrate upon developing computer risk-prediction models to more accurately portray the risks to health from low dose exposures. At the same time we focus on developing tools that improve the accuracy of measurements of the radiation dose, be it from air travel, medical exposures or the natural environment.

Further information

Quotation: Prof. Dr. Michael Atkinson

"HELENA will help the Department of Radiation Sciences to fulfill its mission of maintaining national and international competence in the radiation sciences. Exposing our graduate students to the complexities of radiation research will ultimately also strengthen our efforts to maintain an interdisciplinary research platform at Helmholtz Zentrum München."


Prof. Dr. Michael Atkinson
Helmholtz Zentrum München and TU München

Helmholtz Research School of Radiation Sciences RS2

Coordinator: Dr. Corinna Loës

Institutes and Research Units

The thematic field Radiation Research is represented by the following institutes and research units:

The Helmholtz Research School Radiation Sciences is part of the thematic field.