Expansion of Boehringer Ingelheim Research Institute of Molecular Pathology (IMP), Austria

The construction of a new research premises for the Research Institute of Molecular Pathology (IMP) began in March 2015 at the Vienna Biocenter in the third district of Vienna, Austria’s capital city.

The project is fully sponsored by Boehringer Ingelheim, which will invest €50m ($54.53m) for the construction. The new building, which will be completed by the end of 2016, is expected to be a leading research institute in molecular biology on a global scale.

Details of the molecular pathology research facility

The IMP building will have a total floor space of 15,000ft². It will have gross built area of 14,945m² and gross built volume of 66,854m³. It will accommodate 250 researchers from 35 nations and be provided with sophisticated laboratories and office space.

The building will include a five-storey atrium under which the office and laboratory areas will be arranged. It will house a spacious lecture hall, server room, a workshop and a cafeteria.

A smooth glass façade will stretch up the atrium from the ground to the fourth floor. The façade will be transparent in the open areas. A bridge will be used to connect it with the neighbouring building, so that the entire infrastructure will be used.

The facility will open up new possibilities to further develop Vienna Biocenter in future. It will bring about improvements in infrastructure, flexibility and new communication opportunities to achieve scientific results.

Research activities at Boehringer Ingelheim’s research facility

The facility will be used to carry out research in cell and molecular biology, neurobiology, disease mechanisms and computational biology. It will be used for the discovery of fundamental molecular and cellular mechanisms underlying complex biological phenomena.

It will focus on carrying out research on neural circuits in drosophila auditory perception and memory in the neocortex, spatio-temporal specificity of miRNA function, and stem cell commitment in haematopoiesis circuit mechanics of emotions in the limbic system.

The research topics will include symmetry breaking during cell polarisation, learning and memory in drosophila, in addition to the molecular basis of migration, and molecular machines and mechanisms of protein quality control and antibody diversification.

Other areas of research focus will include systems biology of regulatory motifs and networks, molecular mechanisms of kinetochore function, mitosis and chromosome biology, and finding and probing cancer drug targets using advanced in-vivo RNAi.

Contractors involved

The contract to design the new IMP building was awarded to ATP architects engineers, an Austrian-based company. The building construction contract was awarded to PORR, which is also an Austrian company.


The IMP building will be constructed using building information modelling (BIM) and will comply with environmentally friendly methods. It will have a resource-saving energy concept, which will facilitate the recycling of most of the energy used in the building.

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