Status: Completed
Start Date: January 2005
End Date: December 2009


Integrated Functional Genomics in Mutant Mouse Models as Tools to Investigate the Complexity of Human Immunological Disease (MUGEN)

Immunological diseases encompass a wide variety of disorders, affecting a steadily increasing proportion of people living in modern societies. Immunological diseases include multiple sclerosis, systemic lupus, rheumatoid arthritis and cancer. During the past decade, dramatic advances have been made in understanding mechanisms regulating the immune system, its pathological processes, and processes of immune deviation. As such, it was recognized that systemic or organ-specific inflammatory, infectious and autoimmune conditions share basic mechanisms of initiation and progression. Further elucidation of these mechanisms promises to be of very high value for diagnosis and treatment of these disorders.

In this context, the MUGEN network of Excellence aims to structure and shape a world-class framework of European scientific and technological excellence in the field of “murine models for immunological disease”, to advance understanding of the genetic basis of disease and to enhance innovation and translatability of research efforts. MUGEN’s specific mission is to bring together different expertise from academic and industrial laboratories in order to study human immunological disease by integrating the participant institutions’ strengths in immunological knowledge with new approaches in functional genomics.

Through its Joint Programme of Activities, MUGEN aims to:

  1. Systematically study animal models for immune diseases and processes through the application of functional genomic platforms (transgenesis, targeted and random mutagenesis, expression profiling and bioinformatics).
  2. Integrate the outstanding research experience and capacities of each network participant to allow the efficient application of post-genomic approaches to generate new knowledge in immunological diseases and processes. Such knowledge is expected to lead to novel diagnostic and therapeutic tools.
  3. Ensure spreading of excellence, optimal use and dissemination of the knowledge generated through the network beyond the boundaries of MUGEN, by integrating competencies to train researchers, to encourage knowledge transfer, to address innovation related aspects of research and to raise the public awareness of scientific research issues.

To achieve this goal, MUGEN is bringing together expertise from 14 leading research institutes, 5 major universities and 5 biotechnology companies from seven E.U. member states as well as Switzerland and the US. MUGEN was co-funded by the EU over a 5-year period (2005-2009).

Biovista was responsible for supplying Corporate and Network Intelligence to the MUGEN participants. It also provides part of the infrastructure that is made available to MUGEN consortium participants.

Biovista's BEA tool allowed MUGEN participants to analyze scientific literature in novel ways that support scientific discovery.

Access the MUGEN site here.

For more information

For more information on the project or if you would like to discuss the application of this research to your work, please send an email to: info{at}