Marine molecular biology
Image credits: EMBL/P.Riedinger

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Partners: EMBL; Sars International Centre, Bergen, Norway

The partnership between EMBL and the Sars International Centre was established in June 2003, realising the potential for uniting the complementary strengths of the two institutions in order to facilitate scientific exchange and collaboration in the field of marine molecular biology. The Sars Centre is hosted in the Bergen High Technology Centre and is a part of Uni Research A/S (controlled by the University Research of Bergen).

The Sars Centre performs basic research on marine organisms using molecular methods. Its scientific profile has been gradually built up in two directions - the study of animal evolution, and the establishment and use of marine animals as model organisms. The research is governed by the Comparative Molecular Biology of Marine Animals Program, which was jointly created by the Centre's Director Daniel Chourrout, the Sars Scientific Advisory Committee and the Research Council of Norway (RCN).

The Sars Centre has eight internationally recruited independent research groups coming from more than 20 countries.

Currently EMBL and Sars Centre are jointly involved in a large project envisaging the establishment of a European Marine Biological Resource Centre (EMBRC), as part of the European Strategy Forum on Research Infrastructures (ESFRI).