Major Cancer Biology Students 2013

6th November 2015: DKFZ-HIGS Graduation Ceremony

Some of the successful graduates from the Major Cancer Biology classes of 2012 and 2013 with their DKFZ Certificate and Congratulations

Some of the successful graduates from the Major Cancer Biology classes of 2012 and 2013 with their DKFZ Certificate and Congratulations
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20./21. June 2015: First retreat organized by Major Cancer Biology students

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"How to make young scientists think about their career?"

In June 2015 the DKFZ Cancer Biology students dedicated a weekend to their first retreat in Weil der Stadt. The event was jointly organized by the senior and junior students and it was a great success!

How to make young scientists think about their career? - Read their answers here …

15. October 2013: 24 new students have arrived at the DKFZ - Welcome!

Major Cancer Biology class of 2013 - with the Scientific Program Coordinator Prof. Ilse Hofmann and the Head of the Scientific Council of the DKFZ, Dr. Jörg Hoheisel (picture taken in front of the ATV Building on October 15)
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Prince Saforo AMPONSAH (Ghana)

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University Education
Oct 2013 to present: pursuing M.Sc. Molecular Biosciences, Major Cancer Biology; Ruprecht-Karls-Universität Heidelberg and DKFZ, Heidelberg (Germany)
Aug 2008 – Jun 2012: B.Sc. (Honours) Biochemistry; University of Ghana, Legon (Ghana)
Sept 2011 – Dec 2011: International Exchange; Carleton University, Ottawa ON (Canada)

Highest Degree
B.Sc. (Honours) Biochemistry

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Relationship between avidity and functionality of anti-malarial antibodies from Plasmodium falciparum-exposed individuals

Internships
Aug 2012 – July 2013: Teaching and Research Assistant at the Department of Biochemistry, Cell and Molecular Biology, Dr. Augustine Ocloo; and The Institute of Applied Sciences and Technology, Prof. Sammy T. Sackey, University of Ghana, Legon (Ghana) – National Service
Jan 2012 – Jun 2012: Department of Immunology, Dr. Kwadwo Asamoah Kusi, Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research, Accra (Ghana) – Bachelor Thesis
Jun 2011 – Aug 2011: Department of Bacteriology, Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research, Accra (Ghana)

Research Interests/Future Plans
Cancer remains one of the major causes of death worldwide and is steadily becoming a more important and neglected cause of premature mortality than infectious diseases in developing countries. Unfortunately, these countries have inadequate expertise and resources to deal with the disease – i.e prevention, early detection and treatment. I wish to use an understanding of the biology of cancers to develop cost efficient tools to improve diagnosis and therapy, especially in these deprived areas. Of interest to me is the involvement of signaling pathways in cancer development and progression, and more especially how these intricate pathways regulate cell growth and contribute to tumor mass. The identification of common downstream effectors among these pathways, as well as effective small molecule inhibitors against them, provides a huge potential for cancer drug development.

Sophie BOOS (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013 – present: pursuing M.Sc. in Molecular Biosciences, Heidelberg University and DKFZ
08/2012 – 05/2013: Study abroad at Wesleyan University, USA
10/2009 - 09/2013: B. Sc. in Molecular Medicine, Ulm University

Highest Degree
B.Sc. in Molecular Medicine

Title of Bachelor Thesis
The role of the oncogene DEK in homologous recombination

Internships
07/2013 – 09/2013: Internship in the Musculoskeletal Research Unit, University of Zurich, Switzerland
10/2012-05/2013: Research in the laboratory of the Molecular Biology and Biochemistry Department of Wesleyan University, CT, USA
09/2011 and 2012: Internship and Bachelor’s thesis in the laboratory of the Department of Gynaecologic Oncology at the University of Ulm
08/2010:  Internship in the laboratory of the Department of Comparative Biology and Experimental Medicine, at the University of Calgary, AB, Canada
10/2008:  Internship at the Department of Physiological Chemistry at the University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover, Germany

Research Interests/Future Plans
In my first year of studies in the Bachelor’s program Molecular Medicine at Ulm University, I took a class where several professors told us about their current research. This is where I first learned about the regulation of apoptosis. I remember being captivated by the complex network of different caspases activating each other, finally leading to apoptosis of a damaged cell. It fascinated me how tightly regulated and balanced this system had to be and that even the smallest imbalance could lead to drastic changes like an increased cancer risk.
Two years later, I was still fascinated by cancer biology and chose to do my Bachelor’s thesis on homologous recombination in breast cancer cell lines. After exploring the world of epigenetics during my stay at Wesleyan University, I am looking forward to learning more about cancer. I hope to combine my interests in epigenetics and cancer during practical work in the lab.

Contact
s.boos (at) dkfz.de

Natalie BRAUN (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013-present: Pursuing Master of Science in Molecular Bioscience, Major Cancer Biology, Ruprecht-Karls-University of Heidelberg and DKFZ
09/2010-05/2013: Bachelor of Science in Biosciences, Ruprecht-Karls-University of Heidelberg

Highest Degree
Bachelor of Science

Title of Bachelor Thesis
CD95 induces the expression of nicotinamide N-methyltransferase in glioma cancer stem cells

Internships
08/2011-present: Division of Signaling and Functional Genomics, Prof. Dr. Michael Boutros, German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Germany
06/2013-08/2013: Laboratory of Dr. Natalia Gromak, Sir William Dunn School of Pathology, University of Oxford, United Kingdom
01/2013-05/2013: Division of Molecular Neurobiology of Brain Tumors, Prof. Dr. Ana Martin-Villalba, German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Germany.-Bachelor Thesis
07/2012-09/2012: Laboratory of Molecular and Cellular Medicine of Prof. Dr. Timothy J. Kieffer, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada

Research Interests/Future Plans
My undergraduate studies inspired my passion for cancer biology and during my Bachelor thesis I had the chance to focus on cancer stem cells and tumour immunology. The discovery of novel molecular markers and the targeting of cancer stem cells are important steps towards new treatment options. In my Master´s program at the DKFZ I hope to receive more insight into cancer prevention, diagnostics and therapy. I am especially eager to deepen my knowledge in the field of tumour virology and understanding the role of non-coding RNAs in carcinogenesis. After my Master´s degree I am looking forward to pursuing an academic career including a doctoral degree in cancer research.

Contact
n.braun (at) dkfz.de

Lea BÜHLER (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013 - present:M.Sc. in Molecular Biosciences with Major Cancer Biology, Ruprecht-Karls-University of Heidelberg and DKFZ, Germany
10/2010 - 08/2013:    B.Sc. in Molecular Medicine, Albert-Ludwigs-Universität of Freiburg, Germany

Highest Degree
B.Sc. in Molecular Medicine

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Influenza virus induced protein dynamics

Internships
5/2013-8/2013: Bachelor thesis at the ZBSA-Center for Biological Systems Analysis, Freiburg, AG Dengjel, Protein Dynamics Group – “Influenza virus induces protein dynamics”
7/2012-10/2012: Student research assistant at the ZBSA-Center for Biological Systems Analysis, Freiburg, AG Dengjel, Protein Dynamics Group
3/2013-4/2012: Practical at the ZBSA-Center for Biological Systems Analysis, Freiburg, AG Dengjel, Protein Dynamics Group - “Differences in phosphotyrosine levels upon EGF stimulation during oncogene-induced cell transformation” and “Cloning a split-GFP construct for establishment of an optical mitophagy read-out”
5/2007: Practical at the BfEL-Bundesforschungsanstalt für Ernährung und Lebensmittel, Karlsruhe

Research Interests/Future Plans
I have always been interested in cancer biology and thanks to my bachelor programme “Molecular Medicine” in Freiburg, I have gained various insights in tumorgenesis. My fascination belongs to the ability of cancer cells to evade the immune system and how various viruses can create cancer. Besides those topics I would also like to learn more about radiation oncology and non-invasive methods to detect cancer as those fields are completely new to me. I decided to participate in this master programme because I want to go beyond my current knowledge and to get further experiences and focused training in the field of cancer research. I am looking forward to getting to know the different divisions of the DKFZ during various practical courses. After obtaining my Master degree, the Ph.D. programme of the “Helmholtz International Graduate School for Cancer Research” is a great perspective for me.

Contact
l.buehler (at) dkfz.de

Raffaela BUNG (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013 – present: Master of Science in “Molecular Biosciences – Major: Cancer Biology”, Ruprecht-Karls-University and DKFZ, Heidelberg, Germany
10/2010 – 09/2013: Bachelor of Science in “Molecular Biomedicine”, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-University, Bonn, Germany

Highest Degree
Bachelor of Science in Molecular Biomedicine

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Generation and characterization of murine induced early neuroepithelial progenitor cells

Internships
02/2012 – 03/2012: Laboratory of the Stem Cell Engineering Group (SCEG) of Prof. Dr. Edenhofer, Institute of Reconstructive Neurobiology, University Bonn, LIFE & BRAIN Center, Germany – Project: Purification of the protein R105
01/2013 – 09/2013: Laboratory of the Stem Cell Engineering Group (SCEG) of Prof. Dr. Edenhofer, Institute of Reconstructive Neurobiology, University Bonn, LIFE & BRAIN Center, Germany – Project: Bachelor Thesis and further characterizations of induced early neuroepithelial progenitor cells

Research Interests/Future Plans
Cancer biology represents a highly dynamic and huge research field. As tumorigenesis is a complex process, the understanding of the underlying molecular mechanisms is of outmost importance. Furthermore, the numerous types of cancer are a major challenge for the field of therapy. For me, the most promising kind of therapy is the personalized medicine as it is targeting the unique molecular characteristics of the cancer type and therefore, the chance of curing is increased. I would like to work on the topic of viral gene therapy as I find the field of virology very fascinating. Additionally, I am interested in cancer stem cell related research. During my bachelor thesis, I worked with neural stem cells and I was intrigued by their characteristics of self-renewal and plasticity. Therefore, I would like to continue this path of research in more detail and transfer the knowledge on to cancer stem cells.

Contact
r.bung (at) dkfz.de

Amelie BURK (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013- present: M.Sc. in Molecular Biosciences, Major Cancer Biology, Ruprecht-Karls-University of Heidelberg
10/2009 – 02/2013: B.Sc. in Pharmaceutical Biotechnology, University of Applied Sciences Biberach

Highest Degree
Bachelor of Science in Pharmaceutical Biotechnology

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Regulation of oncogenic Myc by the pseudophosphatase STYX

Internships
03/2013 – 07/2013: University of Manchester, Faculty of Life Sciences, Immunology and Molecular Microbiology, Group of Ian Roberts, UK
03/2012 – 11/2012: Biotechnology Institute Thurgau, Group of Hesso Farhan, Switzerland
04/2009 – 07/2009 Klinikum Stuttgart, Institute of Pathology, Department of Forensic DNA-Analysis, Germany 

Research Interests/Future Plans
The complex contribution of nearly all cellular pathways to cancer progression is an exceedingly interesting fact that led me to the major Cancer biology. I am fascinated by the adaption of tumour cells regarding their altered metabolism as well as by changes within healthy tissue in the surrounding environment of the tumour. Exploring these tumour host interactions and getting insights into the linkage between infection and novel tumour formation are additional areas I would like to deepen my knowledge in. Moreover to participate in the improvement or development of effective cancer therapies and to translate basic research results into a personalised application are my main focuses on the way to become an expert in cancer research.

Contact
a.burk (at) dkfz.de

Magdalena BÜSCHER (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013 – present: pursuing M.Sc. in Molecular Biosciences, Ruprecht-Karls-University of Heidelberg and DKFZ, Germany
10/2010-09/2013: B.Sc. in Biomedical Science, Philipps-University Marburg, Germany

Highest Degree
B.Sc. in Biomedical Science with Major Cancer Biology

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Enrichment, isolation and characterisation of cancer stem cell-like side populations in ovarian carcinoma

Internships
03/2013-08/2013: Bachelor thesis at the Institute of Molecular Biology and Tumour Research Marburg (AG Prof Müller) in cooperation with the Gynaecological Clinic Marburg (AG Dr. Reinartz)
07/2012: Institute of Molecular Biology and Tumour Research Marburg, Philipps-University Marburg (AG Prof. Müller)
09/2011-10/2011: Institute of Physiology and Pathophysiology, Philipps-University Marburg (AG Prof. Daut)

Research Interests/Future Plans
Cancer belongs among the main causes of death and is thus somehow affecting everyone’s life. Moreover the multidisciplinarity of cancer biology, ranging from cell biology and immunology to imaging and cancer treatment, in my opinion provides a maximum of interesting and challenging questions.
During my bachelor thesis I concentrated on the model of cancer stem cells and their possible cell surface as well as epigenetic markers. Since cancer stem cells are mainly responsible for tumour maintenance and metastatic growth, I would like to further concentrate on this topic and learn more about characteristics and possible therapeutic targets of these cells.
I am very glad to join the master program “Cancer Biology” and looking forward to get in touch with the current research projects at University of Heidelberg and the DKFZ. After master graduation I would like to continue my academic career with a Ph.D. Program in Cancer biology.

Contact
m.buescher (at) dkfz.de

Clarissa FEUERSTEIN (Germany)

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University Education
10/2012 - present: pursuing M.Sc. in Molecular Biosciences with Major Cancer Biology, Ruprecht-Karls-University of Heidelberg and DKFZ, Germany
10/2009 – 10/2013: B.Sc. in Nutritional Science, University of Hohenheim, Germany

Highest Degree
B.Sc. in Nutritional Science

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Clustering algorithm: Development of a database for efficient estimation of micronutrient intake in Brazil

Internships
08/2012 – 09/2012: Junior Research Group Systems Biology of Cell Death Mechanisms, DKFZ (Dr. Brady); Project: Implementation of the Yeast Two-Hybrid- System into the lab
01/2012 – 08/2012: Institute or Biological Chemistry and Nutrition, Universtity of Hohenheim (AG Prof. Dr. Graeve); Project: Influence of a phenolic fruit extract on the differentiation of fat cells
08/2008 – 08/2008 Section of Clinical Neuropharmacology, Institute of Pharmacology, University of Freiburg (Prof. Feuerstein)

Research Interests/Future Plans
I took part in a nutrition course with emphasis on natural science, focusing on mechanisms of the metabolisms in the human body at a general and at molecular level. The study excursions to the DKFZ piqued my interest in cancer cell research; particularly the application of Systems Biology fascinates me. I constantly challenge myself to understand procedures and to find logical explanations for observed phenomena. As I am coming from a different field, the specific areas of scientific interests are not defined, yet. I first want to get a deep understanding of cell mechanisms and I’m interested in specifying in an area working with Systems Biology. Now I want to gain knowledge in diverse areas of the cancer research and I am glad to have best possibilities for improving my practical skills in order to go on with my carrier in science with a PhD.

Contact
c.feuerstein (at) dkfz.de

Johannes HEIDBÜCHEL (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013 – present: pursuing M. Sc. In Molecular Biosciences with Major Cancer Biology, Ruprecht-Karls-University of Heidelberg and DKFZ, Germany
10/2010 – 09/2013: B. Sc. In Biochemistry, Christian-Albrechts-University Kiel, Germany

Highest Degree
B. Sc. In Biochemistry

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Identification and validation of tetraspanin 8 interaction partners

Internships
05/2013 – 09/2013: Institute of Biochemistry, Christian-Albrechts-University Kiel (Prof. Rose-John, AG Dr. Schmidt-Arras) – bachelor thesis
04/2013 – 05/2013: Institute of Biochemistry, Christian-Albrechts-University Kiel (Prof. Rose-John, AG Dr. Schmidt-Arras)

Research Interests/Future Plans
I have always been interested in understanding the molecular principles of life and how these are affected in case of diseases. In the course of my undergraduate studies in biochemistry, my fascination for the complexity of the human organism as well as for medical research grew even stronger. In particular, working on a metastasis-promoting protein during my bachelor thesis brought about the wish to achieve a deeper understanding of the mechanisms involved in the often lethal ability of malignantly transformed cells to leave their surrounding cell compounds and to infiltrate distant tissue. I hope to gain detailed knowledge about such specific fields of cancer research, but also about cancerous diseases in general, ranging from signaling pathways over risk factors, imaging radiology and experimental procedures to translational research, in the Major Cancer Biology here at the DKFZ. For my future career, I plan to pursue a PhD afterwards as the next step in becoming part of academic research and thusly hope to contribute to better prevention and treatment of neoplastic malignancies.

Contact
j.heidbuechel (at) dkfz.de

Luisa HENKEL (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013 – present: Pursuing Master of Sciences in Molecular Biosciences with Major Cancer Biology, Ruprecht-Karls-University, Heidelberg and DKFZ, Germany
09/2010 – 08/2013: Bachelor of Scienes in Biological Sciences, Goethe University, Frankfurt

Highest Degree
Bachelor of Sciences in Biological Scienes

Title of Bachelor Thesis
VEGFR-2 signaling in the nervous system

Internships
08/2012-09/2012: John Radcliffe Hospital, Department of Cardiovascular Medicine, University of Oxford, Oxford (GB) Laboratory head: Dr. Hugh Watkins
02/2013-08/2013: BMLS - Buchmann Institute for Molecular Life Sciences Frankfurt, Neurovascular Guidance Group, Goethe University Frankfurt, Prof. Dr. Amparo Acker-Palmer, Bachelor thesis
08/2013-09/2013: Student research assistant at the BMLS - Buchmann Institute for Molecular Life Sciences Frankfurt Neurovascular Guidance Group, Goethe University Frankfurt, Prof Dr. Amparo Acker-Palmer

Research Interests/Future Plans
Throughout my education, especially during university years, I have come to understand an increasingly larger portion of life, which is based on the structural and functional unit, “the cell”. With my growing insight into biological processes and the way the biological arsenal can interrogate the cells, my attention has become more refined but is still not totally set in stone. In particular, I am very fascinated by diverse signalling pathways as they are the basis for the existence of multicellular organisms and the investigation of these networks is fundamental to understand cancer processes. The ability of cancer to bypass various checkpoints and reprogram the whole cell metabolism is both, fascinating and frightening. During my studies at the DKFZ Heidelberg I aim to broaden my knowledge of this disease, especially in metastasis, cancer stem cells and the impact of viruses in cancer development as well as therapy.

Contact
l.henkel (at) dkfz.de

Jens-Martin HÜBNER (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013 – present: pursuing M.Sc. in Molecular Biosciences with Major Cancer Biology, Ruprecht-Karls-University of Heidelberg and DKFZ, Germany
10/2010 – 08/2013: B.Sc. in Biosciences, Goethe University Frankfurt

Highest Degree
B.Sc. in Biosciences

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Crosstalk of reelin and ephrinB ligands in the developing brain

Internships
02/2013 – 08/2013: Institute for Cell Biology and Neuroscience, Goethe University Frankfurt (AK Prof. Acker-Palmer) – Bachelor thesis
07/2012 – 08/2012: Institute for Molecular Biosciences, Goethe University Frankfurt (AK Prof. Osiewacz)

Research Interests/Future Plans
When I first came across the subject of cancer biology during my bachelor studies, I was especially fascinated by the huge variety of factors that may lead to the development of cancer. In each cancer type there may be several molecular mechanisms altered making different treatment approaches necessary. One of these approaches I am particularly thrilled of is the idea to use oncolytic viruses to specifically target and destroy cancer cells. Furthermore, I would like to get insights into approaches that focus on how to localize metastasis inside the human body and how to prevent cancer types from metastasizing at all.
During this master programme, I expect to further deepen my general knowledge about cancer biology while simultaneously focusing on these two topics. Once I have earned my master´s degree, I would like to further advance my scientific career by pursuing a PhD.

Contact
j.huebner (at) dkfz.de

Jens LANGSTEIN (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013 – present: M.Sc. in Molecular Biosciences, Major Cancer Biology; Ruprecht-Karls-University Heidelberg and DKFZ
10/2010 – 6/2013: B.Sc. in Biosciences, Ruprecht-Karls-University Heidelberg

Highest Degree
B.Sc. in Biosciences

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Native expression of clock-controlled gene 9 in Neurospora crassa

Internships
06/2013 – present: Research assistant at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Division Signaling and Functional Genomics
03/2013 – 06/2013: Heidelberg University Biochemistry Center, Division Circadian Rhythms and Molecular Clocks (Prof. Brunner)
08/2012 – 11/2012: Research Fellowship of the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) at the University of Newcastle, Australia, Division Plant Science (Prof. Grof)

Research Interests/Future Plans
Within molecular biology I found my fascination in the realm of gene expression and regulation, and the mechanisms controlling these. A misregulation of gene expression, especially in the cell cycle, is often linked to cancer and other numerous diseases, and therefore underlines the importance and centrality of this process within the cell. In detail, I seek to broaden my knowledge in epigenetic regulatory mechanisms and how they impact on regulation and expression profiles. In this context, the relatively new field of small RNAs and RNAi captured my attention as well, given the fact that their dysregulation is often linked to carcinogenesis, whereas they also possess a vast potential in cancer therapy to silence specific genes in cancerous tissue. During my master studies I not only hope to be introduced to new intriguing research topics and state-of-the-art techniques but also to gain new scientific prospects that qualify for a later Ph.D. program in cancer research.

Contact
j.langstein (at) dkfz.de

Jasmin MECKLER (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013- present: Pursuing M.Sc. in Molecular Biosciences with Major Cancer Biology, Ruprecht-Karls-University of Heidelberg and DKFZ, Germany
08/2010- 08/2013: B.Sc. in Molecular Medicine, Albert-Ludwigs-University Freiburg

Highest Degree
B.Sc. in Molecular Medicine

Title of Bachelor Thesis
LSD1 directed stem cell differentiation

Internships/Work Experience
11/2010-03/2013: student assistant at Albert-Ludwigs-University Freiburg, Experimental and Clinical Pharmacology and Toxicology, Prof. Dr. Dr. K. Aktories
07/2009-10/2010: technical assistant at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Division of Stem Cells and Cancer in the research group of Prof. A. Trumpp
08/2009-12/2009: internship at Northumbria University, Newcastle upon Tyne (UK), Department of Biology, Food and Nutritional Sciences in the research group of Dr. G. Koutsidis
08/2006-07/2009: apprenticeship as technical assistant at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ)

Research Interests/Future Plans
Already during my education as technical assistant at the DKFZ, I had the opportunity to get varied experiences in the field of cancer biology which I could further extend during my studies. The Master program is the ideal opportunity for me to further pursue this way and gain new insights. Despite all effort in recent years, cancer is still the second most lethal disease post cardiovascular-diseases in Germany. To achieve further success in the battle against cancer, innovative therapy approaches like immune therapies or targeted therapies against cancer stem cells are crucial. I’m especially interested in the field of stem cells and cancer stem cells, their niches and their altered signalling pathways. But not only aberrant signalling pathways but also changes in the epigenome contribute to the transformation of a cancer cell. It’s of general interest to identify these changes to support clinical research in developing new drugs against cancer.

Ayse Nur MENEVSE (Turkey)

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University Education
10/2013- present: pursuing M.Sc. in Molecular Bioscience, Ruprecht-Karls-University of Heidelberg and DKFZ, Germany
09/2009 – 06/2013: Bachelor of Science in “Molecular Biology and Genetics”, Bogazici University, Istanbul, Turkey

Highest Degree
B.Sc. in Molecular Biology and Genetics

Title of Bachelor Thesis

Internships/Projects
02/2013 - 06/2013: Bogazici University, Sensory Neuroscience Laboratory (Dr. Stefan H. Fuss), Neurogenesis in the adult zebrafish olfactory system
09/2012 – 01/2013: Bogazici University, Neuromuscular Diseases Laboratory (Prof. Dr. Esra Battaloglu), Involvement of ARAP1 in Charcot-Marie-Tooth disease
06/2012 – 09/2012: German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Heidelberg, Molecular Biology of the Cell II Laboratory (Prof. Dr. Ingrid Grummt), Functional role of DNA:RNA triplex at MTDH promoter region; its effect on the expression of MTDH mRNA and its interaction with candidate repressor protein FOXP3
06/2011 – 07/2011: Deutsches Krankenhaus, Istanbul, Diagnostic Laboratory for Genetic Diseases
09/2010 – 01/2012: Bogazici University, Neuromuscular Diseases Laboratory (Prof. Dr. Esra Battaloglu), The roles of FGF1 and FGFR1-3 in peripheral nerve myelination

Research Interests/Future Plans
The main reason why I have chosen the major of cancer biology is the idea that, my research may have some contribution to the fight against cancer and ease patients’ suffering.During my master’s studies I intend to work on cancer epigenetics and how to use epigenetic markers and mechanisms to develop therapeutic strategies. Triplex forming nuclear noncoding RNAs, cancer specific histone and DNA modifications and their functional roles on gene regulation are my main interests. Apoptosis and defects in signaling pathways which cause cancer are the topics that also attract my attention. In my home country, the relations between molecular biologist studying cancer and oncologists are still very weak in terms of collaborative studies. Support of molecular biology is highly needed for medical areas. In my future carrier, I want to establish a platform where molecular biologists and medical doctors exchange ideas and do collaborations.

Stella PAFFENHOLZ (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013 - present: Master of Science in “Molecular Biosciences - Major Cancer Biology“ at Ruprecht-Karls-University and DKFZ, Heidelberg
10/2010 - 09/2013: Bachelor of Science in “Molecular Biomedicine“ at Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-University, Bonn

Highest Degree
Bachelor of Science in Molecular Biomedicine

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Characterization of aptamers against Rivaroxaban

Internships
07/2013 - 09/2013: Division of Cancer Risk Factors and Prevention (Prof. Plass, Dr. Gerhäuser), DKFZ, Heidelberg - Methylation of microRNA promoters in human breast cancer
01/2013 - 06/2013: Department of Chemical Biology (Prof. Meyer), LIMES Institute, Bonn - Bachelor Thesis
07/2012 - 08/2012: Lead Discovery Biochemistry / HTS Technology, Bayer HealthCare Company, Wuppertal - Establishment of a high-throughput readout-system to screen the effect of small molecules on blood coagulation
02/2011 - 04/2011: Department of Chemical Biology (Prof. Meyer), LIMES Institute, Bonn - Cloning of deletion mutants lacking PTS transporters and their effect on the GlmS riboswitch
07/2010 - 08/2010: Department of Molecular Genetics (Prof. Kimchi), Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel - In vivo approaches to determine ROC domain regulation of DAPK activity
07/2009 and 05/2010: Department of Molecular Developmental Biology (Prof. Hoch), LIMES Institute, Bonn

Research Interests/Future Plans
As my scientific interest has not yet been fully determined, studying cancer biology seemed to be a good choice for me. Oncogenesis is a very complex but also fascinating field of study and is closely connected to other scientific areas.
One of my major research interests is the relatively new field of epigenetics and RNA biology. Although the human genetic code was deciphered more than ten years ago, human gene expression is still too complex to be fully understood. I believe that understanding and targeting epigenetic changes in cancer cells can dramatically improve therapeutic standards.
The Major offers the chance to not only gain further insights into the molecular mechanisms of cancer, but also to be part of translational research. So the scientific results can directly be transferred from bench to bedside increasing the chance to find a suitable - maybe personalized - therapy.

Contact
s.paffenholz (at) dkfz.de

Khwab SANGHVI (India)

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University Education
10/2013 - present : Pursuing Master of Science  in Molecular Biosciences, Major Cancer biology, Ruprecht-Karls-University of Heidelberg and DKFZ
08/2008 - 06/2012: Bachelor of Engineering (B.E.) in Biotechnology, Manipal Institute of Technology, Manipal University, India

Highest Degree
Bachelor of Engineering (B.E.) in Biotechnology

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Analysis of primary breast cancer tumors for stemness and EMT markers using Real Time PCR

Internships
8/2012 - 3/2013: Junior Research Fellow in the laboratory of Dr. Annapoorni Rangarajan, Dept. of Molecular Reproduction, Development and Genetics, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India
1/2012 - 6/2012: Bachelor Thesis in the laboratory of Dr. Annapoorni Rangarajan, Dept. of Molecular Reproduction, Development and Genetics, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India
6/2010: Summer Internship at Saf Labs Pvt. Ltd. , Mumbai, India

Research Interests/Future Plans
Growing up in a developing country like India, I have witnessed daily the crippling effects of poverty and the lack of availability of good and affordable healthcare. A desire to help improve this scenario coupled with an academic interest in identifying methods to check the aggressive takeover of the world by cancer  is what propelled me towards this field of study.
Through the Masters Programme, I wish to gain more experience and knowledge in the areas of stem cell biology, cancer immunology and immunotherapy for a future PhD in cancer therapeutics. At the same time I aim to use DKFZ as an avenue to get more exposure in clinical research and translational medicine. This will help me develop on a prospective career in the industry as a part of projects aimed at identifying and developing  cheaper and more accessible means of cancer diagnosis and treatment.

Contact
k.sanghvi (at) dkfz.de

Maximilian SCHENK (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013-present: pursuing M.Sc. in Molecular Biosciences (Major Cancer Biology), Ruprecht-Karls-University Heidelberg and DKFZ
10/2010-06/2013: B.Sc. in Biosciences, Ruprecht-Karls-University Heidelberg

Highest Degree
B.Sc. in Biosciences

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Regulation of IRF7 and IFI44 mRNA translation in late phase-activated macrophages

Internships
01/2013-present: Research assistant at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), Division Signaling and Functional Genomics, (Prof. Dr. Michael Boutros)
03/2013-06/2013: Center for Molecular Biology of the University of Heidelberg (ZMBH), Research Group Posttranscriptional Control of Gene Expression, (Prof. Dr. Georg Stoecklin), Bachelor Thesis
08/2012-11/2012: DAAD Research Fellowship at the Örebro University in Sweden: “Laser-assisted studies of plant ultraviolet-B radiation signal transduction”

Research Interests/Future Plans
Since the very beginning of my bachelor studies it became clear that I am really dedicated to especially molecular biology, molecular cell biology and genetics. Cancer biology and research provides the unique chance that it combines these three fascinating fields of studies. I found my fascination not only in molecular biology, but also in RNA-biology and especially in the field of RNA-editing. During seminars and in further researches I came across with the high potential of RNA-editing in cancer research, since underediting has been reported in human gliomas. During the master program I am looking forward to expand my knowledge in the vast field of cancer biology, but also to concentrate more on the fascinating field of RNA-editing in cancer research in my future career.

Alexandra SCHNELL (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013 – present: Master of Science in Molecular Biosciences, Major: Cancer Biology, Ruprecht-Karls-University Heidelberg and DKFZ, Germany
08/2012 – 12/2012: Exchange student, Washington University, St. Louis, USA
10/2010 – 08/2013: Bachelor of Science in Biology, Eberhard-Karls-University Tübingen, Germany

Highest Degree
Bachelor of Science in Biology

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Characterisation of HLA-A*01 restricted T-cell epitopes of human adenovirus 2

Internships
04/2013 – 08/2013: Bachelor thesis, Prof. Dr. Stefan Stevanović, Department of Immunology,University of Tübigen, Tübingen, Germany
02/2013 – 03/2013: Molecular basis of liver cancer susceptibility in mice, Ph.D. Norman Drinkwater, McArdle Laboratory for Cancer Research, University of Wisconsin, Madison, USA
08/2012 – 12/2012: Initiation and regulation of DNA double-strand break end resection, Ph.D. Zhongsheng You, Department of Cell Biology and Physiology, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, USA
10/2010 – 08/2013: Research assistant, Prof. Dr. Detlef Weigel, Department of Molecular Biology, Max-Planck-Institute for Developmental Biology, Tübingen, Germany

Research Interests/Future Plans
Throughout the course of my Bachelors studies in Tübingen and St. Louis I discovered my interest for the biology of cancer. The various molecular mechanisms that lead to cancer make the topic challenging and fascinating, a rewarding combination. In particular, I would like to focus on cancer immunology. For the treatment of cancer it is important to understand how cancer cells elude the host’s immune system. In addition, I think that researching in this field is worthwhile because the immune system may provide many promising therapy approaches. Furthermore, I would like to gain further insight into the development of cancer stem cells and their role in tumorigenesis. I am looking forward to developing insights into these subjects during my studies here at the DKFZ. After my Masters, I plan on continuing my scientific career by pursuing a Ph.D.

Lisa SCHUBERT (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013 - present: M.Sc. in Molecular Biosciences with Major Cancer Biology, Ruprecht-Karls-University of Heidelberg and DKFZ
10/2010 - 09/2013: B.Sc. in Biomedical Science, Philipps-University Marburg

Highest Degree
B.Sc. in Biomedical Science

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Validation and characterization of novel interaction partners of PRMT6

Internships
03/2013 - 07/2013: Institute of Molecular Biology and Tumor Research, Philipps-University Marburg (AG Prof. Bauer) - bachelor thesis
08/2012 - 09/2012: Institute of Molecular Biology and Tumor Research, Philipps-University Marburg (AG Prof. Bauer)
08/2011 - 09/2011: Institute of Cellbiology, Philipps-University Marburg (AG Prof. Lill)

Research Interests/Future Plans
During my studies of Biomedical Science in Marburg my fascination for molecular biology grew stronger the more I learned. It amazes me that complex and dynamic structures like single cells and even highly developed organisms like humans function. At the same time, the smallest changes can have dramatic consequences, as it is often the case in cancer cells.
One of the topics that I am especially interested in is the fragile balance of gene regulation since this is such a fundamental aspect of life which also plays a major role in tumor formation. To me this field seems to offer so many unsolved questions and I think that finding answers here will not only help to improve cancer therapy but also to obtain a deeper understanding of how organisms work in general. After finishing this master’s program I am planning to pursue a PhD in the field of cancer research.

Contact
lisa.schubert (at) dkfz.de

Ralph SCHULZ (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013 - present: pursuing M.Sc. in Molecular Biosciences with Major Cancer Biology, Ruprecht-Karls-University of Heidelberg and DKFZ, Germany
09/2009 - 08/2013: B.Sc. in Biotechnology, Lausitz University of Applied Sciences, Senftenberg, Germany

Highest Degree
B.Sc. in Biotechnology

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Tumor immune infiltration after angiostatic treatment of patients with metastatic renal cell carcinoma

Internships
09/2012 - 04/2013: Bachelor Thesis at Cancer Center Amsterdam (CCA) / VU Medical Center / Department of Medical Oncology / Angiogenesis laboratory (Prof. Arjan W. Griffioen) / Amsterdam / The Netherlands
09/2011 - 02/2012: Practical Term of Study at Karolinska Institutet / Department of Microbiology, Tumor and Cell Biology (MTC) / Yihai Cao group / Stockholm / Sweden. Topic: Adipose tissue and its vasculature: a promising target for the prevention and treatment of obesity

Research Interests/Future Plans
During my internships abroad, I became aware of the tremendous ability of tumor cells to evade from immune surveillance as well as immunotherapy. The complexity and flexibility in tumor resistance involving a multitude of different established escape mechanisms fascinates me greatly. Certainly, there are even more still unknown ways of tumor self-protection and adaptation, which represent a major challenge in finding a suitable target for a potential cancer therapy. One promising approach I am particularly interested in is the enhancement of anti-tumor immunity in cancer patients by combining anti-angiogenic drugs with immunotherapeutic agents. Therefore during my master studies, I would like to deepen my knowledge of carcinogenesis and prospective treatment approaches, especially in the field of tumor immunology and angiogenesis. Through this, I hope to come into contact with current research projects and ongoing clinical trials in these fields to gain a solid foundation for my intended PhD studies afterwards.

Contact
ralph.schulz (at) dkfz.de

Pia SOMMERKAMP (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013 - present: Master of Science in Molecular Biosciences, Major Cancer Biology, Ruprecht-Karls University of Heidelberg and DKFZ, Germany
10/2010 - 06/2013: Bachelor of Science in Molecular Biomedicine, Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-University Bonn, Germany

Highest Degree
B.Sc. in Molecular Biomedicine

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Phenotypic characterization of myeloid cell subsets expressing the aryl hydrocarbon receptor repressor

Internships
11/2012 – 12/2012: Department of Developmental Pathology, University Hospital Bonn, Germany (Prof. Dr. Schorle)
08/2012 - 09/2012: Research Department of Pathology, University Hospital Bonn, Germany (PD Dr. Kirfel)
07/2010: Architecture and Brain Function, Institute of Neuroscience and Medicine (INM-1), Forschungszentrum Jülich, Germany (AG Prof. Dr. Amunts)

Research Interests/Future Plans
During my undergraduate studies I had the possibility to gain basic knowledge regarding cancer biology. Now I am here at the DKFZ in Heidelberg and have the great opportunity to get insight into different fields of cancer research. There are many topics that I am interested in. One of them is the cancer stem cell hypothesis. In the last few years it has become evident that cancer stem cells contribute to tumor formation. They are capable of rebuilding tumor tissue in all its heterogeneity and are hardly affected by conventional tumor therapy. It is one of my aims to contribute to the understanding of cancer stem cells. Thereby, I wish to help towards the development of new drugs that are capable of targeting this specific cell type. At the DKFZ, I hope to acquire a deeper understanding of cancer biology that qualifies me for my subsequent PhD studies.

Contact
p.sommerkamp (at) dkfz.de

Lea WEHRMANN (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013 - present: Master of Science in “Molecular Biosciences - Major Cancer Biology“ at Ruprecht-Karls-University and DKFZ, Heidelberg
10/2010 - 09/2013: Bachelor of Science in “Molecular Biomedicine“ at Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-University, Bonn

Highest Degree
Bachelor of Science in Molecular Biomedicine

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Assay development for siRNA screen targeting WNT/β-catenin pathway

Internships
07/12 – 08/12: Department of Chemical Biology, Prof. Dr. Famulok, Life and Medical Science Institut (LIMES), Bonn, Germany: Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor Signaling
02/13 – 07/13 Department of Target Discovery Technologies, Dr. Pohlenz, Bayer HealthCare AG, Berlin, Germany: Bachelor thesis

Research Interests/Future Plans
Cancer is the second-most cause of death in the industrialized world and the incidences are increasing dramatically as it is a disease of the aging population. The various ways a tumor cell can transform the genomic program of normal cells and beyond find ways to escape general treatment is an enthralling and due to the high death rate in modern-day society highly topic issue, in which I would enjoy supporting researchers in the future.
The Major of Cancer Biology offers the opportunity to get insight in diverse approaches to further understand cancer biology. As RNAi was already a topic during my bachelor thesis used as an experimental tool to find new cancer drug targets, I now would like to deepen my knowledge in the field of endogenous non-coding RNAs showing abnormal expression patterns in cancers. Additionally I want to focus on new aspects like cancer stem cells and their impact on recrudescence.

Contact
l.wehrmann (at) dkfz.de

Yue ZHUO (PR China)

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University Education
01.2010-05.2013: University of Michigan-Ann Arbor

Highest Degree
B.Sc, Major Cellular and Molecular Biology

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Measuring lysosomal Ca2+ release using a new heneration of henetically encoded Ca2+ sensors

Internships
05.2011-06.2012: Research Assistant of Haoxing Xu lab, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
06.2012-04.2013: Lab manager of Haoxing Xu lab, University of Michigan-Ann Arbor

Research Interests/Future Plans
Thanks to my father, a physician specialized in hematology, I have had the ideal to find a cure for leukemia since childhood, until I found the story far more complicated than I could comprehend. Yet, this intellectual challenge motivates me to find out how different types of leukemia develop. Hopefully I can contribute to this demanding task and find a solution to help the patients.

Contact
y.zhuo (at) dkfz.de

Svenja ZIELKE (Germany)

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University Education
10/2013 – present: pursuing M.Sc. in Molecular Biosciences with Major in Cancer Biology, Ruprecht-Karls University of Heidelberg and DKFZ
10/2010-7/2013: B.Sc. in Biomedical Science/Humanbiologie with focus on Tumor Biology, Philipps University Marburg  

Highest Degree
Bachelor of Science in Biomedical Science  

Title of Bachelor Thesis
Identification of amino acids of the nuclear receptor PPARβ which are necessary for the proper function of inverse agonists  

Internships
03/2013-7/2013: Institute of Molecular Biology and Tumor Research, Philipps-University Marburg (AG Prof. Müller), Bachelor Thesis
07/2012-08/2012: Institute of Molecular Biology and Tumor Research, Philipps-University Marburg (AG Prof. Müller)
03/2012-04/2012: Institute of Molecular Biology and Tumor Research, Philipps-University Marburg (AG Prof. Bauer)  

Research Interests/Future Plans
During my bachelor thesis, I got insight into the complexity of the field of Cancer Research and the various methods that are used in Molecular Tumor Biology. I find it extremely important and interesting how the knowledge obtained through molecular research is used for the development of new anti-cancer therapies. In this context, I am also interested in cancer stem cell research. Tumors are heterogeneous and besides the cancer cells which make up most of the tumor mass, they contain a population of cancer stem cells. Those cancer stem cells often convey resistance to chemotherapy. Elucidation of the genetics of cancer stem cells will allow the development of more effective anti-cancer drugs which also target cancer stem cells. Therefore, my personal goal is to contribute to the deeper understanding of the genetics of cancer stem cells.  

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