Who can apply for MD fellowships

The Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds (BIF) awards MD fellowships to excellent medical students studying in Germany who wish to pursue an experimentally demanding and hypothesis-driven research project in basic biomedical research in an internationally leading laboratory away from their home institution and city.

You are eligible if you

  • Study human medicine in Germany
  • Have obtained good or very good marks in the first section of the medical examination or its equivalent (1. Abschnitt der Ärztlichen Prüfung bzw. Äquivalenzprüfung) and during your subsequent studies
  • Are prepared to put your studies on hold for your research stay and change your place of work (institution and city) for the entire duration of the MD fellowship, i.e. for at least ten consecutive months.

Timing of application

  • At least three months before the planned change of location and start in the host laboratory
  • Within eight years of obtaining your university entrance qualification (e.g. Abitur)
  • Your research stay must be completed before taking the third section of the medical examination (3. Abschnitt der Ärztlichen Prüfung).

We do not fund

  • Clinical studies
  • Applied research, such as biotechnological and pharmaceutical development (e.g. development of assays for diagnostic purposes or drug screening, optimization or screening of substances for therapeutic use, development of drug delivery systems or vaccines)
  • Studies on the course of diseases or the treatment of symptoms
  • Botanical and prokaryotic investigations, unless they are of general biological importance.

BIF MD fellowships cannot be used to complete investigations already supported by others or supplement inadequate funding from other institutions or earned income.

For further examples, please see What we fund and do not fund.

We fund

We support only experimental projects in basic biomedical research, including in silico projects, for example:

  • Structural and functional analysis of telomerase
  • The role of spontaneous activity in the development of neural circuits
  • Intestinal symbionts induce distinct populations of regulatory T cells
  • Heterochromatin protein 1 secures survival and transmission of malaria parasites
  • Epigenetic reprogramming in the maternal germ line.

For further examples, please see What we do and do not fund or browse summaries of completed PhD projects in Futura, the BIF's international journal, covering a similar range of topics as the MD fellowships.

If you are not sure whether your project fits within the scope of what we support, please feel free to contact us and email us a half-page to one-page summary of your research project prior to submitting your application. Please include your project title, experimental hypothesis, aims, approaches, and methods of investigation.