Publications and Awards
Out now on Nature Review Cancers: Disconnecting multicellular networks in brain tumours
High grade gliomas form a malignant tumour cell network via tumour microtubes leading to therapy resistance of the untreatable tumour – glioblastoma. Newer studies have shown, that glioma cells not only form networks with themselves but furtherly connect themselves with the tumour microenvironment. The communication with neurons in a direct synaptic, perisynaptic and paracrine manner contributes to tumour proliferation and progression.
Fig. 1: Heterogeneous and cooperative tumour networks in glioma.
In this review, Venkataramani et al. characterise glioma network communication on multiple levels. Thereby the authors distinguish between tumour-tumour-connectivity and tumour-neuron connectivity. After giving an overview of structures contributing to the malignant network, targeted therapeutic options are suggested to inhibit the tumour-tumour and tumour-neuron-connectivity in brain tumours. Lastly, the authors discuss potential relevance of these connective networks in other histological types of brain tumours and other cancer entities outside the brain, leading to the need to study and understand the growing field of cancer neuroscience.
Fig. 2: Potential strategies for therapeutic disconnection.
Adapted from Venkataramani, V., Schneider, M., Giordano, F.A. et al. Disconnecting multicellular networks in brain tumours. Nat Rev Cancer (2022). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41568-022-00475-0
German Cancer Award 2022 in Translational Research for Prof. Dr. med. Frank Winkler by DKG
Since 1986, the prize is awarded annually to the following categories excellent research, experimental basic research, translational research and tumour diagnostics and treatment with a monetary prize of €7,500. This year’s recipients are:
Prof. Salah-Eddin Al-Batran for Clinical Research
Prof. Mathias Heikenwälder for Experimental Research
Prof. Frank Winkler for Translational Research
As a fundamental scientist in the field of experimental neurooncology, Frank Winkler was trained in Hamburg, Freiburg, London, Munich and Boston (Rakesh Jain Lab). Now, he works as a managing senior physician at the Department of Neurology at University Hospital Heidelberg and leads his own lab at the German Cancer Research Center. He and his team have discovered important structures like membranous protrusions called tumour microtubes and neuron-glioma synapses contributing to the understanding of the malignancy and therapeutic resistance of high grade gliomas in adults. We therefore send out our biggest congratulations for the well deserved prestigious prize in cancer research.