Hanno Glimm Group
Translational Medical Oncology: Understanding and targeting alterations in cancer
The Department for Translational Medical Oncology investigates the molecular and cellular mechanisms for cancer development, proliferation and evolution and engages in clinical as well as experimental activities to ensure a rapid turnaround of scientific results into clinical application and clinical outcome into new hypotheses.
Understanding and targeting alterations in cancer
Unique alterations within tumor cells can be targets for novel treatment approaches. Scientists of the department for Translational Medical Oncology are working on identifying pivotal gene alterations and cellular subtypes that are responsible for initiating or fueling tumor growth and metastasis formation. Within individual patient tumors, a small fraction of all cells drives long-term tumor growth and metastases. Targeting this tumor-initiating cells (TIC) activity is essential to improve the long-term outcome in advanced solid cancers. The lab has developed and extensively characterized a bank of primary in vitro and in vivo models derived from solid patient tumors, e.g. CRC, PDAC and sarcomas. These functionally and genetically heterogeneous models are utilized to identify therapy relevant alterations and synthetic lethal interactions, e.g. by large scale shRNA knockdown or overexpression screening approaches. Following functional testing of potential therapeutic target alterations, targeted therapeutic strategies are developed and translated into the clinic.
The Glimm Lab, represented by the Department of Translational Medical Oncology in Dresden and the Translational Functional Cancer Genomics group in Heidelberg, welcomes researchers at both NCT partner sites to join their expertise in collaborating on these research questions.
NCT MASTER Registry trial for patients
In an interdisciplinary approach, new discoveries are directly transferred into treatment recommendations using the NCT/DKTK MASTER registry trial. The NCT-MASTER (Molecularly Aided Stratification for Tumor Eradication) protocol consents young patients or patients with rare tumor diseases for molecular diagnostics approaches with the explicit purpose of evaluating and stratifying for the best molecular treatment strategy and enrolment in diagnostic and therapeutic trials. The NCT MASTER is a joint NCT program between NCT Heidelberg and NCT/UCC Dresden.
Center for Personalized Oncology
The NCT/UCC Dresden Center for Personalized Oncology aims at translating latest research as well as innovative technologies and cancer therapies into clinical practice. A dedicated personalized oncology outpatient clinic provides consulting appointments to discuss innovative diagnostic approaches, results of genetic tumor profiling and molecularly guided treatment strategies. Clinical data and results of molecular analyses as well as potential therapeutic implications are discussed within a personalized oncology tumorboard participated by an interdisciplinary team of specialists in molecular diagnostics, targeted cancer therapy as well as involved clinical departments.
Future Projects and Goals
- Understand transcriptional and functional heterogeneity in primary tumors and model systems
- Identify novel molecular targets underlying resistance or sensitivity against targeted therapies or immunotherapies
- Define molecular profiles that can be used as biomarkers for response to targeted therapies or immunotherapies
- Discover effects of clonal heterogeneity and plasticity on treatment response in patient-derived tumor models
Methodological and Technical Expertise
- Patient derived tumor models (e.g.Organoids, Spheroids, Xenografts)
- Characterization of patient derived tumor models
- Identification of candidate genes regulating tumor cell functions by functional genomics (e.g. shRNA Screens/CRISPR screens)
- Functional analysis of tumor cell properties
- Drug sensitivity testing on Patient derived tumor models
- In depth molecular analysis of patient tumors and derived tumor models (bulk and single cell technologies)