Clinical Cooperation Unit Neurooncology

Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Wick


The CCU Neurooncology is structured in a group for experimental neurooncology focussing on intravital microscopy with the main main of unraveling growth and resistance patterns of glioma in the brain as well as critical steps in the formation of brain metastases and brain metastasis-brain microenvironmetal interactions. This research is funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG). Another group has a focus on intrinsic glioma treatment resistance and contribution of the glioma microenvironment to resistance. There, one topic is to unravel the molecular mechanisms of several targeted therapies in glioblastoma such as APG101, a soluble form of CD95, but also to define resistance signaling pathways, such as mTOR/NDRG1/MGMT signaling for alkylating therapy. In Krebshilfe and HIPO funded projects, we also aim to understand the interaction between molecularly defined treatments and different qualities of radiation and develop basic concepts for the newly developed NCT Neuro Master Match (N2M2) umbrella trial for newly diagnosed MGMT unmethylated glioblastoma. Our clinically oriented research focuses on the development of diagnostic, prognostic and predictive biomarkers in anaplastic glioma and glioblastoma. This research, done in collaboration with the Neuroradiology, Neuropathology, Proteomics and Epigenetics groups at the DKFZ, is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) and the Deutsche Krebshilfe and builds on larger randomized trials that have been coordinated by the clinical Neurooncology unit. Another clinically oriented focus is on development of immunotherapies for brain tumors.
Ultimately, the research in the Neurooncology Clinical Cooperation Unit (CCU) should focus on problems derived from the clinical Neurooncology program, with the clear aim of translating the results back into the clinic.

New biomarkers that would optimally be sufficient for guiding therapeutic decision-making will be characterized, developed and explored for their potential use in diseases other than brain tumors. Currently, such predictive markers are under research and a large multicenter umbrella trial using a biomarker-driven treatment decision approach is being started. From this and other research on targeted therapies, new molecules and, ultimately, points for therapeutic intervention are to be developed. With the exciting data on multicellular brain tumor networks a new concept of growth and resistance for tumors growing in the brain has been established. We aim at further understanding the impact of these networks for the brain tumor development and interaction with the healthy brain as well as understanding its role in shaping the microenvironment and offering really novel options for intervention. As with other projects, the group is strongly linked to the Neuropathology CCU, the CCU Neuroimmunology and Brain Tumor Immunology (G160), the Junior Groups of Brain Tumor Metabolism (G161) and Molecular Mechanisms of Tumor Cell Invasion (V077) and the experimental imaging departments at both the Head Clinic and the DKFZ. This will be of utmost importance for the transfer of research results to the clinic.


Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Wick
Neurooncology (B320)
Neurologische Klinik
& Nationales Centrum für Tumorerkrankungen
Im Neuenheimer Feld 400
69120 Heidelberg
Tel: +49 6221 56 7075
Fax: +49 6221 56 7554

Selected Publications

  • Kessler T. et al. (2015). Glioma cell VEGFR-2 confers resistance to chemotherapeutic and antiangiogenic treatments in PTEN-deficient glioblastoma. Oncotarget, 6(31):31050-31068.
  • Osswald M, Jung E, Sahm F, Solecki G, Venkataramani V, Blaes J, Weil S, Horstmann H, Wiestler B, Syed M, Huang L, Ratliff M, Karimian Jazi K, Kurz FT, Schmenger T, Lemke D, Gömmel M, Pauli M, Liao Y, Häring P, Pusch S, Herl V, Steinhäuser C, Krunic D, Jarahian M, Miletic H, Berghoff AS, Griesbeck O, Kalamakis G, Garaschuk O, Preusser M, Weiss S, Liu H, Heiland S, Platten M, Huber PE, Kuner T, von Deimling A, Wick W, Winkler F. Brain tumour cells interconnect to a functional and resistant network. Nature. 2015 Dec 3
  • Wick W, Fricke H, Junge K, Kobyakov G, Martens T, Heese O, Wiestler B, Schliesser MG, von Deimling A, Pichler J, Vetlova E, Harting I, Debus J, Hartmann C, Kunz C, Platten M, Bendszus M, Combs SE. A phase II, randomized, study of weekly APG101+reirradiation versus reirradiation in progressive glioblastoma. Clin Cancer Res. 2014 Dec 15
  • Wiestler B, Capper D, Sill M, Jones DT, Hovestadt V, Sturm D, Koelsche C, Bertoni A, Schweizer L, Korshunov A, Weiß EK, Schliesser MG, Radbruch A, Herold-Mende C, Roth P, Unterberg A, Hartmann C, Pietsch T, Reifenberger G, Lichter P, Radlwimmer B, Platten M, Pfister SM, von Deimling A, Weller M, Wick W. Integrated DNA methylation and copy-number profiling identify three clinically and biologically relevant groups of anaplastic glioma. Acta Neuropathol. 2014 Oct
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