Division of Pediatric Neurooncology (DKFZ B062)
The fact that we can nowadays much more accurately diagnose brain tumors and subtypes, and sometimes even identify the “Achilles' Heel” of the tumor should not imply that all ground work to better understand these tumors is done – rather the opposite is true! We constantly seek for novel insights into tumor biology and ways to translate new discoveries into clinically applicable tests or applications to the benefit of our patients.
The Division of Pediatric Neurooncology consists of four research groups that cover different aspects of childhood brain tumor research. The “Molecular Diagnostics Group" is involved in the establishment of diagnostic innovations and interpretation of results, but also drives the identification and characterization of novel genetic aberrations in pediatric gliomas of different grades. The "Preclinical Research Group” conducts drug screens in childhood brain tumor models as well as preclinical experiments with pre-selected promising drugs, but at the same time aims at understanding the molecular make-up of embryonal brain tumors including atypical teratoid-rhabdoid tumors (AT/RT), embryonal tumors with multilayered rosettes (ETMR), and supratentorial primitive neuroectodermal tumors (stPNET) as well as ependymomas. The “In Vivo Group” is a joint group between the Division of Pediatric Neurooncology and the Division of Molecular Genetics. This group focuses in generating faithful brain tumor mouse models that are necessary to test new treatment options before they can ultimately be given to patients. The group “Computational Oncoepigenomics” is responsible for the establishment and application of bioinformatics methods to handle and analyze large-scale (epi)genomics data.