Germany?s Max Planck Society has been authorized to take over a publicly-financed research institute in Bonn and totally revamp it, with the goal of turning it into a leading international neurosciences institute. The move, approved Friday (June 2) by the board of trustees of the Center for Advanced European Studies and Research (Caesar), comes two years after a negative 2004 report on the progress of the institute.Caesar spokeswoman Francis Hugenroth told The Scientist that ?as you can imagine, we would have hoped for another solution,? such as remaining independent and maintaining its focus on nanotechnology, biotechnology, and medical devices. Some of the center?s 90 scientists, Hugenroth said, have the feeling this was a hostile takeover ? a characterization Planck president Peter Gruss disagreed with.Most of the scientists are on 5-year contracts, and they and their 50 postdocs have a sense that their contracts will not be extended and that Max...

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