History of the IKP

Dr. Margarete Fischer-Bosch

It was a generous donation by Dr. Margarete Fischer-Bosch, the eldest daughter of Robert Bosch, which provided for the foundation of the Dr. Margarete Fischer-Bosch Institute of Clinical Pharmacology (IKP). At the end of 1973, the institute started its work with 4 employees.

Since that time researchers have been working on the customization and improvement of drug therapy. This research is done in close cooperation with clinical research groups from the Robert Bosch Hospital (RBK) and with external partners.

Still, the enormous interindividual variability of drug efficacy – ranging from poor activity as well as adverse drug reactions (ADR) to toxic reactions – turns out to be a major problem. Meanwhile, around 80 staff members in the research divisions of the IKP/RBK have accepted the challenge of solving these issues.

Despite major advances in drug therapy, it is still difficult today for doctors to choose the right medication for each patient in an effective dose while minimizing side effects. In collaborative research projects between the IKP, the RBK and national as well as international institutions, scientists and doctors investigate to what extent genetic and non-genetic factors both affect the individual treatment response as well as contribute significantly to disease development.

Within both main research areas – Oncology and Pharmacogenomics - individual groups work on many projects in which the complex interactions between drugs and individuals (from gene to patient) are studied at various levels. These research activities are supported by additional externally-funded research projects. Every new research project has to pass the expert opinion of an external scientific advisory board. Following the advice of this board, it is ensured that all eligible research projects can be conducted safely. Since the foundation of the IKP, the Robert Bosch Stiftung (Stuttgart) has provided the main financial support for these projects.

January 2007, Prof. Matthias Schwab became the Head of the institute. In addition, he is both Chair of Clinical Pharmacology at the University of Tübingen and Medical Director of the Department of Clinical Pharmacology, University Hospital Tübingen.