Prenatal period – years 1953-1989

9.11.1953 – Almost immediately after establishing of the Slovak Academy of Sciencs, its first presidium approved formation of Laboratory of Neurophysiology as one of 7 workplaces of the so called Group of Small Workplaces of SAS. Its founder was Prof. MUDr. Juraj Antal, DrSc. (*1912 – †1996), who at that time led the Physiological Institute of the Faculty of Medicine, Comenius University.

1957 – The Group of small workplaces is transformed into the Institute of experimental medicine SAS – IEM SAS (director J. Antal).

1965 – IEM SAV was subdivided into Institute of Experimental Surgery SAS (today Institute for Heart Research SAS), Institute of Experimental Hygiene SAS, and Institute of Normal and Pathological Physiology SAS (INPP SAS). From the Department of Neurophysiology of this institute seceded the Department of General Physiology (DGP INPP SAS) led by MUDr. Jozef Zachar, DrSc. (*1925 – †2000), which started to foster studies of muscle excitability and contractility by electrophysiological methods that resulted in research of the molecular basis of excitability – proteins of ion channels. Here we can find the roots of the present-day name of the institute containing the words “molecular physiology“. In the period of the 60s and 70s, several publications of DGP INPP SAS with high international impact were published that were cited altogether 347 times.

1970 – Construction of the new building in the Kramáre district led to relocation of the Department of General Physiology from the historical downtown building at Sienkiewiczova 1 into premises at Vlárska 3.

1.1.1979 – based on the decree of the Presidium of SAS dated 19.12.1978, Centre of Physiological Sciences SAS (CPS SAS), directed by academician J. Zachar, was established. Five institutes were incorporated into CPS SAS: Institute of Normal and Pathological Physiology SAS (INPP SAS), Institute of Experimental Endocrinology SAS (IEE SAS), Institute of Experimental Surgery SAS (now Institute for Heart Research SAS, IHR SAS), Institute of Experimental Pharmacology SAS (now Institute of Experimental Pharmacology and Toxicology SAS, IEPT SAV), Institute of Neurobiology SAS (INb SAS). Besides unification of 5 institutes into one organizational entity, additional laboratories and organizational units were created in CPS SAV – Central Facilities, CPS SAS – that were under direct authority of the Director of the Centre.

1982 – CPS SAS started to publish the international journal General Physiology and Biophysics that is still published today.

Creation of the Institute of Molecular Physiology and Genetics

1989 – Abolition of the Centre of Physiological Sciences SAS in the process of social transformation at the end of 1989 led to return of independence of INPP SAS, IEE SAS, IHR SAS, IEPT SAS and INb SAS and to establishment of the Institute of Molecular Physiology and Genetics (IMPG) SAS, directed by academician J. Zachar, from the Central Facilities of CPS SAS on 1.1.1990. J. Zachar abdicated on 1.7.1990. On the basis of an open competition and of the first free elections, MUDr. Branislav Uhrík, CSc. was appointed director.

The number of employees of IMPG SAS upon delimitation from CPS SAS was reduced from 182 to 148. Further reduction of the number of employees to the final number of 45 was necessitated by the strong economic pressure in the years 1991 and 1992, mainly by dissolving applied research laboratories and application workshops of the institute.

1993 – 2010 were the years gradual stabilization of IMPG SAS. The number of employees stabilized on 53. MUDr. B. Uhrík, CSc. was replaced on the post of director by Ing. Albert Breier, CSc. in 1998 and by doc. Ing. Oľga Križanová, DrSc.  in 2009. In 2010 IMPG SAS consisted of 10 laboratories.

2011 – Based on the recommendation of the Accredatation Committee, the structure of the institute was changed and laboratories were merged into three Departments: Department of Muscle Cell Research, Department of Transport Proteins, and Department of Cell Physiology and Genetics, in which the Laboratory of Genetics remained as the common workplace of IMPG SAS and of Faculty of Natural Sciences, Comenius University.

2015 – Preparation for the planned transformation of the Institute into a Scientific Research Institution in the context of the forthcoming Act on SRIs led to fundamental changes. At the meeting of the Academia of IMPG SAS on 17. 2. 2015, fundamentally different notions of the direction of the Institute were expressed. A smaller part of Academia, including the former director, opted for the merger of IMPG SAS with the institutes that formed the Center of Biomedical Sciences. A majority of scientists, however, with respect to the qualification structure of IMPG SAS, preferred to maintain the current orientation of the Institute on molecular and cellular physiology as a basic scientific discipline of biomedical research. These fundamentally different views led to a decision that required organizational changes at IMPG SAS. The director of IMPG SAS stepped down on 15. 4. 2015, and doc. RNDr. Lubica Lacinova, PhD, the former vice-director, was approved acting director. On 1. 5. 2015, 11 workers of IMPG SAS were delimited into the Center of Molecular Medicine SAS (MMC SAS). On 1. 7. 2015, Ing. Zdena Sulová, DrSc. has been duly appointed by open competition for the post of Director.  This process, which took place with the support of the Worker’s Union and employees of IMPG SAS, enabled to retain a continuity in the research activities of IMPG SAS as an institution of basic physiological research. Staff of IMPG SAS after the delimitation amounted to 42.

During the existence of IMPG SAS, seven researchers attained the title Doctor of Science, which enabled accreditation of IMPG SAS as an external educational institution in three fields of science: Animal Physiology, Biochemistry and Biophysics.

IMPG as an part of the Center of Sciences of the SAS

2017 – In accordance with the general trend of integration of fragmented research in Slovakia, the Center of Biociences SAS was imposed in order to achieve the higher productivity of participating institutes. The establishment of the Center of Biosciences SAS dates back to 1 January 2017. Initially, the Institute of Animal Biochemistry and Genetics (IABG SAS) and the Institute of Molecular Physiology and Genetics of SAS (IMPG SAS) were associated. Both institutes have signed a Memorandum of Understanding for the establishment of the Center of Biosciences SAS. The main motivation for this initiative was horizontal inclusion based on the application and methodologies established in partner institutions. Achieving an adequate, well-managed situation through a small center of interdisciplinary nature, potentially its efficiency and quality, achieving competitiveness within the research area, as well as achieving the higher success rate of financial projects.

2018 – from January, the 1st, another institute joined the Center of Biosciences – Institute of Animal Physiology (IAP SAS) based in Košice.

8.1. 2018 – the new consolidated Organizational Rules of the CBv SAS entered into force at the IMFG. In this context, an organizational change occurred in the organizational unit of the IMG – three departments formed two departments. The Department of Muscle Cell Research (DMCR) and the Department of Cell Physiology and Genetics (DCPG) have merged into the Department of Neural and Muscle Cell Research (DNMCR), the Department of Transport Proteins (DTP) has retained its name. There was also a reorganization of the personnel composition of the departments, due to personnel problems among employees, but also due to a revealed management error in the sense of the Public Service Act.

12.1. 2018 – Some members of the former Department of Muscle Cell Research (DMCR) contacted the director of the CBv SAS for delimitation of the “department” at the Institute of Experimental Endocrinology of the BMC SAS, to a team focused on muscle metabolism research. They pointed out, as reasons for their actions, the fundamental differences between the interests of the management of the IMPG and the interests of their group, as well as keeping close to the medical sciences. In total, nine IMPG employees applied for delimitation.

2.9 2018 – Delimitation of some IMPG staff is completed. The name of the departments is changed: DNMCR becomes Department of Biophysics and Electrophysiology (DBE) and DTP becomes Department of Biochemistry and Cytochemistry (DBC).


Directors of IMPG SAS

JZ Jozef Zachar

1.1.1990 – 30.6.1990

 BU Branislav Uhrík

1.7.1990 – 30.6.1998

 AB Albert Breier

1.7.1998 – 3.6.2009

 JZ Oľga Križanová

4.6.2009 – 31.4.2015

 ZS Zdena Sulová

1.7.2015 – present