Public projects


Molecular cell tomography for improved cancer surgery

Cancer: Better diagnosis and treatment thanks to modern imaging techniques

The visualization of microscopic changes in human cells associated with cancer is critical to their diagnosis and treatment. Modern imaging techniques at the strong university hospitals and major research and development laboratories in the region on the German and Danish sides (UKSH and OUH) offer a great opportunity to study these changes quickly and reliably. By combining new complementary techniques, diagnostics will be significantly improved and validated by hospitals. To date, there has been no cross-border exchange of knowledge between research and development institutions, clinics and interested companies.

A VISION as innovation hub

The aim of the Celltom project is to combine the advanced techniques and make them available across the entire program region across sectors. For this purpose, Celltom will set up a Virtual Service Center for Microscopic Imaging (VISION), which will provide a one-stop-shop for interested research organizations, physicians and companies wishing to take advantage of the new microscopy techniques. The service center will also be an innovation hub for regional medical technology companies. At a later stage of the project VISION will involve companies in the food industry and in the medium term will be opened up to other sectors as well. Thus, Celltom leads to a leap in knowledge in the Interreg Germany-Danmark program region in the field of sustainable innovation, which generates new jobs and manpower.

Together for the region

All this is only possible in a cross-border collaboration in which the partners bring together their complementary microscopy techniques and their expertise. The Biomedical Institute of the University of Lübeck (BMO) and the Medical Laser Center Lübeck (MLL) will contribute modern optical technologies, while the Mads Clausen Institute of the University of Southern Denmark in Sonderburg will introduce a unique helium ion microscope. This combination creates the prerequisites for developing new and reliable diagnostic methods that enable physicians to quickly – i. during surgery – to check if a tumor has been completely removed. The UKSH and the OUH will validate the new techniques. In addition, by involving geographically dispersed network partners (clinics, companies, cluster and technology transfer organizations), the entire program region will benefit from the results.

Build competencies & advance knowledge transfer

Finally, Celltom also focuses on the required skills development and transfer from the medical sector to the food industry and materials science. Innovative microscopic imaging and diagnostic methods are also extremely relevant here. The training of highly qualified medical and imaging personnel – a key factor in making the region competitive – will therefore be strengthened.

Virtual service center VISION

A key milestone in the Celltom project is the establishment of a virtual service center for biomedical imaging. Called VISION, this center aims to provide research facilities, hospitals and companies access to the imaging techniques developed in the project. In the course of the project and beyond, VISION will enable users to microscopically reproduce exactly the same structures with different techniques with a precision of less than one micrometer, which is unique in the German-Danish Interreg program region.

Visit VISION Center:

Celltom is funded by Interreg Germany-Danmark with funds from the European Regional Development Fund. Learn more about Interreg Germany-Danmark at

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