Research projects create confidence for positive changes and solutions in the area of pain


Hamburg, Germany (September 22,  2011) – As pain concerns the everyday lives of millions of people worldwide, understanding its mechanisms is crucial to improve patients’ conditions and treatments. In line with this thought, five former winners of the EFIC-Grünenthal Grant (E-G-G) presented insights into the development and progress of their projects at the show case symposium “New Findings in Clinical Pain Research” during the 7th EFIC® Congress in Hamburg, Germany.


The E-G-G supports young scientists in carrying out innovative and exploratory clinical pain research projects. The EFIC® and Grünenthal, who are both sponsors, regard the sustainability of the winning projects as one of the priorities. Therefore the symposium at the EFIC® Congress is an essential element to show the importance of disseminating and honoring the research results of these young scientists.


Additionally, the symposium serves as a platform for the young researchers to express their thoughts and visions.


This year the presented and discussed research projects are:


  • “The association of COMT polymorphisms with chronic low back pain in combat related PTSD” clarified by Dr Marijana Braš, Croatia, winner of the E-G-G 2008
  • “Effects of social observation in placebo analgesia”, by Dr Luana Colloca, Italy, winner of the E-G-G 2009
  • “Nociceptive steady-state evoked potentials” by Prof André Mouraux, Belgium, winner of the E-G-G 2008
  • “Small fibers – big difference in neuropathic pain”, presented by Prof Gunnar Wasner, Germany, winner of the E-G-G 2009


Prof Christian Maihöfner, from the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg and winner of an E-G-G in 2006, gave insights in experimental neurology by holding the guest speech “When learning hurts: cortical plasticity and neuropathic pain”. These topics show how innovative and ambitious the awarded projects were.


“Through these pain research projects of our young scientists, we can add valuable insights and support the progress on our way to help millions of people suffering from pain” said Prof Hans Kress, the President of the European Federation of IASP®  Chapters (EFIC®). “The results presented at our symposium are remarkable”.


In addition, the E-G-G has great significance for the young scientists who are supported by Grünenthal and the EFIC®: “Understanding underlying pain mechanisms is the key to develop new treatment strategies in neuropathic pain.


Winning the E-G-G gave me the great opportunity to successfully put an idea about underlying pain mechanisms into practice. The positive results of my study are the basis for further research to close the gap towards more effective neuropathic pain therapy”, said Prof Gunnar Wasner, MD from Kiel, Germany and one of the winners of the E-G-G.


Since 2010 the EFIC-Grünenthal Grant is awarded bi-annually and totals up to € 200,000. It aims at identifying treatment gaps and potential solutions for new medications in pain treatment. “Through the E-G-G, young scientists who conduct research in the important area of pain, are encouraged to and supported to put their ideas into real research projects while at the same time, they can contribute at an early stage in their career to help patients suffering from pain”, added Prof Martin Koltzenburg, Chair of the EFIC® Committee on Research.


Interested young scientists can apply for the E-G-G 2012 from January 2012.

More information:



About EFIC®


The European Federation of IASP® chapters (EFIC®) is a multidisciplinary professional organisation in the field of pain science and medicine, made up of the 35 European Chapters of National Pain Societies of IASP® (International Association for the Study of Pain). Established in 1993, EFIC®’s 35 constituent chapters represent Pain Societies from 35 countries and close to 20,000 scientists, physicians, nurses, physiotherapists, psychologists and other healthcare professionals across Europe, who study pain and treat patients suffering from pain.


For more information, please visit



About Grünenthal


The Grünenthal Group is an independent, family-owned international research-based pharmaceutical company with headquarters in Aachen, Germany. Building on its unique position in pain, its objective is to become the most patient-centric company and to be a leader in therapy innovation. Altogether, the Grünenthal Group has affiliates in 36 countries worldwide. Grünenthal products are sold in more than 100 countries and approx. 4,900 employees work for the Grünenthal Group globally. In 2010, Grünenthal reached revenues of about 910 million €.


More information:



Grünenthal, 22.09.2011 (antwerpes) (tB).


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