Practical Course HP-F9: Cancer Genomics, Proteomics and Murine Tumor Models

Type: Practical Course with Student Seminars

Date: 14. April - 15. May 2020

15 lab days (exact schedule/days off t.b.a.)

Hosts/Organizers: Hai-Kun Liu, Azer Acikgoz, Yue Zhuo; Cindy Körner, Stefan Wiemann (organizer contact:


Functional genomics research collects quantitative genomic as well as proteomic data and links this to functional and phenotypic measurements. This practical presents an overview of genomic, proteomic and functional analysis methods in cancer research, in vitro and in vivo. Main learning objectives of this course are to enable students to work in a team to create a project proposal based on previous data, to conduct and explain selected functional genomics methods and mouse models and to interpret their data with respect to the initial research question.


Module 1 (10 days) – Functional analysis of a tumor-related miRNA in breast cancer

Supervisors: Cindy Körner, Janine Jung, Xiaoya Li, Ana Maia, Zhivka Hristova, Stefan Wiemann (TP3)

During the pre-meeting, we will present background on breast cancer as well as a scientific observation that will serve as basis for generating research questions and hypotheses to be addressed during the course both theoretically and experimentally. In the week from 14th of April, together with the supervisors, all students will spend 3 days to give their seminar presentations and to develop in groups of four a complete project plan to be followed in the second part of this module (group 1: 7 days between 20. and 30 April; group 2: 7 days between 4. and 15. May). During the second part, they will conduct selected experiments to test their hypotheses. Data will be interpreted together with the supervisors in the context of the initial hypothesis. Methods will include reverse-phase protein arrays, TaqMan qRT-PCR, transfections and functional analyses (e.g. cell cycle, proliferation, apoptosis, miRNA targeting, invasion, migration).


Module 2 (5 days) – Gene expression analysis in mouse models of human tumors

Supervisors: Hai-Kun Liu, Azer Acikgoz, Yue Zhou; @TP4)

Using advanced genetically engineered mouse models of glioblastoma, the students will learn how to isolate mouse brain tumors, prepare sections, and perform immunohistochemistry experiments followed with microscopic analysis. Alterations of key signalling pathways like PI3K/AKT or MAPK pathway will be analysed in this in vivo material. Basic principles of mouse models of human cancer will be introduced (group 1: 5 days between 4. and 15. May. and group 2 between 20. and 30. April, to be arranged with the supervisors).


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