alliances & cooperations

Innovative diagnostic and therapeutic approaches
to combat rare diseases


deadline: June 30, 2024
area of research: rare diseases, personalised medicine, biomedicine, biotechnology, bioinformatics, data sciences
type of funding: collaborative and individual projects
eligible: professors and postdocs at universities and non-university research institutions in Lower Saxony

what we promote

A large number of different rare diseases impair the quality of life of many of those affected. Little is usually known about the individual diseases. The funding program enables researchers to better understand, diagnose and treat rare diseases.

The aim of the call is to provide new impetus to research on rare diseases. Interdisciplinary extensions of the research design are strongly welcome. Research projects on rare diseases are also encouraged to place a particular focus on childhood manifestations. In principle, projects dedicated to previously undiagnosed diseases that could be rare diseases according to the definition, are also eligible for funding.

projects can focus on the following areas:

  • High-throughput sequencing and genotyping of existing and possibly still to be expanded cohorts and other longitudinal health data, including the identification of (predictive) biomarkers (candidates)
  • Understanding new challenges in law and ethics regarding medical and research data in the context of rare diseases
  • Strengthening interdisciplinary perspectives using AI, machine learning and innovative imaging
  • xRNA-based therapeutic approaches, e.g., in the context of antisense oligonucleotide therapies
  • Innovative approaches to the acquisition and processing of biomedical data, e.g., through AI/ML, neural networks
  • Development and testing of innovative diagnostic approaches and further development of procedures that were previously very complex due to exclusion diagnostics
  • Proof of concept projects for the development of gene therapeutics
  • Proof of concept projects for the use of (multi-)omics approaches in the research of rare diseases

How to apply

terms and conditions
Please read the "Information for Applicants" carefully and familiarize yourself with the application conditions.
prepare your application
You can find further documents for preparing your application below.
submit application
Submit your application in electronic form via the application system.
The assessment is organised by the office of the Wissenschaftliche Kommission Niedersachsen. Successfully reviewed projects can be funded from 1 April 2025.


Andreas May
Niedersächsisches Ministerium für Wissenschaft und Kultur
Simone Künnecke