Press Releases

No. 49 | 04. October 2017 | by Koh

October: Breast Cancer Awareness Month - Towards personalized breast cancer screening

© Kooperationsgemeinschaft Mammographie

Many unnecessary mammography examinations and, thus, many falsely positive findings could be avoided if women who have a lower breast cancer risk were invited to mammography screenings at longer intervals, while women at increased risk could take screening examinations more frequently. However, how can one determine a woman's individual breast cancer risk accurately? Scientists at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) in Heidelberg are working to enhance the mathematical models that are used for risk prediction. Blood samples collected as part of the EPIC study help them achieve this goal.

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No. 50 | 05. October 2017 | by Doy

Colorectal cancer screening: Nine different tests – but they deliver comparable results

Colon cancer under the microscope
© Lutz Langbein, DKFZ

The earlier colorectal cancer and its precancerous lesions are detected, the better. For this purpose, new immunological tests for hidden traces of blood in the stool have been in use since this year. These tests only deliver positive results if specific threshold values of hemoglobin are exceeded. Scientists from the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) in Heidelberg have compared nine of these tests. Their result: All nine tests detect the vast majority of colorectal cancer cases and also many of its precancerous lesions. However, the manufacturers' specifications of the hemoglobin value above which there is a suspected case of colorectal cancer vary widely. Adjusting the thresholds, the scientists showed that all tests deliver very similar results. Even a smartphone test that functions without laboratory analysis can compete with test results from the laboratory.

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No. 48c2 | 02. October 2017 | by Koh

Endowed chair at the German Cancer Research Centre commences work thanks to a one-million Euro donation from CTS EVENTIM

Karsten Rippe
© Jutta Jung/DKFZ

The German Cancer Research Centre (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum, DKFZ) has created an endowed Chair in Chromatin Networks with the University of Heidelberg. Karsten Rippe, a biophysicist, will take up the Chair and will lead this department of the DKFZ. The new professorship is funded by CTS EVENTIM, one of the world’s leading providers of ticketing services and live entertainment. The company is providing the sum of one million Euro – the highest sum it has ever donated.

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No. 48c | 26. September 2017 | by Koh

A shared vision of life without cancer

Signing of the MoU: Prof. Michael Baumann, Chairman of the Board and Scient...
© Princess Margaret Cancer Centre

Two leading cancer research centres with a shared vision of life without cancer today announced they will collaborate to advance world-class research programs and education to benefit patients around the globe. The partners – Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, University Health Network, and the German Cancer Research Center (Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum "DKFZ"), Heidelberg, – signed a Memorandum of Understanding in Toronto establishing the principles and framework for their collaboration.

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No. 48 | 21. September 2017 | by Koh

DKFZ researcher is among the world’s best in radiology

Alexander Radbruch
© Jutta Jung/DKFZ

Alexander Radbruch, a radiologist at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) has been recognized by peer professionals to be among the 15 most influential persons worldwide in the category Radiology Research. Radbruch has become known internationally in recent years from his studies showing that gadolinium, a contrast agent used for magnetic resonance imaging, can be retained in the brain.

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No. 46 | 11. September 2017 | by Doy/Koh

Chronic cell death promotes liver cancer

A model for chronic liver disease: In this genetically modified mouse liver...
© Heikenwälder/DKFZ

Liver cancer occurs predominantly in patients whose liver has been damaged as a result of chronic disease. Until now it has remained in the dark how these events are linked at molecular level. An international team of scientists from the German Cancer Research Center and the University of Zurich has now shown that chronic cell death promotes the development of cancer. The more cells die, the more the remaining cells have to divide. In this process, they accumulate mutations: fertile ground for liver cancer to develop.

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No. 42c | 23. August 2017 | by Rei

Chaos in cell division – How chromosomal defects arise in cancer cells

Cell division with surplus centrioles at both spindle poles. The upper pane...
© Alwin Krämer/DKFZ

Cancer cells often have aberrant numbers of chromosomes. Scientists from the German Cancer Research Center have now discovered a new mechanism that plays a role in these typical chromosomal aberrations. The new findings question the current concept of how cancer cells survive the chaos during cell division. This might also make it necessary to rethink specific treatment approaches that interfere with the distribution of chromosomes.

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No. 42 | 16. August 2017 | by Rei

Using barcodes to trace cell development

© Nicole Schuster/DKFZ

There are various concepts about how blood cells develop. However, they are based almost exclusively on experiments that solely reflect snapshots. In a publication in Nature, scientists from the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg now present a novel technique that captures the process in a dynamic way. Using a "random generator", the researchers label hematopoietic stem cells with genetic barcodes that enable them to trace which cell types arise from the stem cell. This method will facilitate whole new insights into the development of various tissues as well as cancer.

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No. 41c | 02. August 2017 | by Koh

Therapies for older leukemia patients

© The Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (AFIP), Wikimedia Commons

The German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, DFG) will provide funding for a new research group at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) and at the University of Freiburg and Freiburg University Medical Center. The scientists will jointly pursue fundamental and clinical research into acute myeloid leukemia (AML). The DFG will support the project with funds of approximately €4.2 million over the next three years.

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No. 41 | 28. July 2017 | by Koh

Cancer cells put the brakes on immune system

Macrophage after treatment with green colored exosomes (blue nucleus, red: ...
© DKFZ

In order for cancer cells to successfully spread and multiply, they must find a way to avoid the body's own immune system. Scientists at the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) have published an explanation for how this occurs with chronic lymphatic leukemia (CLL). The degenerated cells cause an inflammatory reaction and influence other blood cells with it so much, that the immune system is suppressed. They send out messages via exosomes, little bubbles, which the cells transmit to their surroundings. The discovery by the DKFZ scientists paves the way for new therapy approaches.

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