Research topics

The University Hospital Zurich conducts pioneering research in highly specialized medicine and utilizes the latest knowledge from medical research. This benefits our patients both now and in the future. The following examples are just a selection of our research topics.

Alternatives to blood transfusion improve safety

In the May 2013 edition of the journal Lancet, Professor Donat R. Spahn, Director of the Institute for Anesthesiology, published a study analyzing the benefits of alternatives to blood transfusions and other new concepts such as "patient blood management". For the first time, the study was able to show that alternatives to blood transfusions significantly improve safety.

New methods for severely overweight individuals

Starting in 2013, the UHZ was the first hospital in Switzerland to offer a new treatment for obesity and adult onset (type 2) diabetes: the EndoBarrier. A plastic tube is inserted endoscopically into the small intestine, where it prevents food from being converted into energy. The method is an alternative to surgical procedures such as a gastric bypass or gastric banding.

New therapeutic approach for multiple sclerosis

An international research team led by Professor Roland Martin of the Department of Neurology has developed a new method for the early treatment of multiple sclerosis. The method reduces the autoimmune reaction specifically targeted against myelin antigens. This was documented in the ETMIS study published in the June 2013 edition of Science Translational Medicine.

750th cochlear implantation

Thanks to cochlear implants, people with an auditory impairment are able to hear again. The UHZ – today the largest CI center in Switzerland – helped develop this technology. The first Swiss cochlear implantation was successfully performed here in 1977. The 750th was carried out in May 2013. Over 160 cochlear implantations are now carried out every year in five Swiss centers. A third of them are implanted in young children.

Vaccinating cats in cases of allergies

In 2013, a research team from the UHZ developed an innovative method to counteract human allergies to cats. For the first time, the cat – rather than the human – can be vaccinated against the protein trigger responsible for allergic reactions in humans. The research group led by Dr Gabriela Senti, Dr Thomas Kundig and Prof Martin Bachmann was honored with the Swiss Technology Award 2013 for its novel method.

"Broken heart syndrome" scientifically proven

Takotsubo cardiomyopathy is a rare form of heart attack. It is also referred to as "broken heart syndrome". The syndrome occurs suddenly, usually after a significant emotional event. Researchers from Zurich and Hanover have now discovered a biomarker (micro RNA) for Takotsubo cardiomyopathy. They submitted a report in the European Heart Journal in September 2013.