New method can predict side effects of anticancer drugs
Every new anticancer drug can improve patients’ chances of survival. In some cases, however, these drugs can cause severe adverse side effects through mechanisms that are often unclear. An international team of researchers from Munich, Heidelberg, Sweden and Singapore has now succeeded in developing a new method that helps explain and even predict side effects that occur at cellular level.
Nobel Prize winner at the Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Göttingen and the German Cancer Research Center: Nobel Prize in Chemistry awarded to Stefan Hell
For the second time a researcher at the DKFZ has been awarded the highest distinction in science: Professor Stefan Hell, director of the Max-Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry in Göttingen and department head at the DKFZ, has been awarded this year´s Nobel Prize in Chemistry for his pioneering work in the field of ultra high resolution fluorescence microscopy. This follows the 2008 Nobel Prize in Medicine for Harald zur Hausen.
DKTK partner site Essen/Düsseldorf starts new cooperation with industry
Joint Press Release of the German Cancer Consortium and the Lead Discovery Center
The Lead Discovery Center GmbH (LDC), a renowned translational research organization, and the Helmholtz Association, Germany’s biggest scientific organization, will be collaborating more closely in future. An initial pilot project in cooperation with Professor Schulte’s research group at the DKTK partner site Essen/Dusseldorf has just been launched. Together with the LDC, they will be developing a novel cancer therapy approach with the aim of identifying new drug candidates for the treatment of neuroblastoma and other cancer types.
Cancer stem cells – The long road to targeted therapies
Researchers working on cancer, stem cells and cancer stem cells convened for the fifth time at the German Cancer Research Center (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, DKFZ) in Heidelberg on September 28th to 30th, 2014. About 400 experts from around the world discussed the role of cancer stem cells in various forms of the disease, considering questions such as how they sustain tumors and cause metastases and how they interact with their immediate environments, known as “stem cell niches.” Researchers have gained an ever better understanding of the fatal tricks that cancer stem cells play to survive, and the first attempts to target these cells through therapies have delivered positive results. The next major milestone will be to translate discoveries about the cells into novel treatments. The symposium was funded generously by the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina and by the Heidelberg-based Heinrich F.C. Behr Foundation, which has supported seven other international meetings at the DKFZ in the past.
Cancer stem cells in a tumor determine life expectancy in breast cancer patients
Scientists from the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) and the Institute of Pathology of Heidelberg University Hospital have examined tissue samples from 255 breast cancer tumors in search of two different stem cell markers. Cases where both of these markers were detected were correlated with a dramatic reduction in the life expectancy of patients. Conversely, patients whose tumors exhibited neither of the two markers survived about 10 years longer. The scientists now plan to investigate whether these two markers, found on the surface of breast cancer stem cells, can be used as targets for breast cancer treatments.
Cancer Core Europe: a consortium to address the cancer care – cancer research continuum challenge
Gustave Roussy Cancer Campus Grand Paris (Villejuif – France), Cambridge Cancer Centre (Cambridge, United Kingdom), Karolinska Institutet – KI (Stockholm, Sweden), Netherlands Cancer Institute – NKI (Amsterdam, The Netherlands), Vall d’Hebron Institute of Oncology – VHIO (Barcelona, Spain) and the German Cancer Research Center – DKFZ and its National Center for Tumor Diseases – NCT (Heidelberg, Germany) announce the creation of Cancer Core Europe: a consortium to address the cancer care – cancer research continuum challenge.
Sven Diederichs receives DGVS young investigator award in the field of liver cancer
The German Society for Gastroenterology, Digestive and Metabolic Diseases (DGVS), supported by Bayer Health Care, presented its 2014 young investigator award in the field of hepatocellular carcinoma research to Sven Diederichs. Dr. Diederichs, a molecular biologist at the German Cancer Research Center (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, DKFZ) and the Institute of Pathology of Heidelberg University Hospital, has received the award in recognition of his outstanding scientific achievements in the field of liver cancer research.
Helmholtz PhD Award for Natalie Jäger
Natalie Jäger has received a €5000 award from the Helmholtz Association for her PhD thesis, which she finished with honors this year at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ). In a study of genetic changes in childhood brain cancer, Dr. Jäger discovered for the first time that mutations in one of the two X chromosomes occur at abnormally high rates in cancer.
Resistance training reduces cancer-related fatigue
A 12-week program of resistance training in conjunction with radiation therapy increases the quality of life of breast cancer patients and reduces symptoms of fatigue, as shown by scientists from the German Cancer Research Center and Heidelberg University Hospital in a trial involving 160 women.
Throwing a loop to silence gene expression
Cells attach so-called ‘epigenetic’ signals to their genome to select which part of their genetic information is used. Scientists from the German Cancer Research Center (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, DKFZ) have now systematically investigated the interplay between components of an epigenetic network and developed a mathematical model that describes how it operates. The results can be used to predict how cellular gene expression programs respond to drug treatment or other perturbations of the cellular environment.