July 2020: Mauricio Berriel Diaz

In July 2020:

Mauricio's scientific work in one sentence

Deciphering the mutual interactions between metabolic control and cancer, with an emphasis on the mechanisms underlying cancer-induced body weight loss (cachexia) as well as the impact of the metabolic macroenvironment on cancer development.

Short CV

Highest Level of education: 2000, Diploma in Biology, Philipps-University Marburg, Germany
Promotion: 2004, Philipps-University Marburg
Actual Position: Deputy Director IDC & Head of Division Metabolism and Cancer

What are - in your opinion - your best publications?

Niopek, K., et al. (2017). A Hepatic GAbp-AMPK Axis Links Inflammatory Signaling to Systemic Vascular Damage. Cell Rep 20, 1422-1434.

Rios Garcia, M., et al. (2017). Acetyl-CoA Carboxylase 1-Dependent Protein Acetylation Controls Breast Cancer Metastasis and Recurrence. Cell Metab 26, 842-855 e845.

5 questions about research - past, present, future

1. What are your primary tasks and responsibilities in your actual position?
To provide guidance and support to the young scientists in my group, thereby helping them to do good research with translational potential. To contribute to the organization, performance and success of the IDC.

2. What is it that gives you pleasure and/or satisfaction the most?

When synergistic interaction and exchange of ideas between colleagues result in scientific progress and common growth as researchers.

3. Which research question(s) affect(s) you at the moment? What is its social significance?

Which are the functional interrelations between systemic metabolism and cancer? How do tumors promote body weight loss (cachexia)? How can we exploit the metabolic vulnerabilities of malignant cells for cancer treatment? The definition of cancer as systemic disease might contribute to novel therapeutic concepts to treat the patient and not only the tumor.

4. Which publications influenced you the most?
Calle, E.E., Rodriguez, C., Walker-Thurmond, K., and Thun, M.J. (2003). Overweight, obesity, and mortality from cancer in a prospectively studied cohort of U.S. adults. N Engl J Med 348, 1625-1638.
Cai, D., Frantz, J.D., Tawa, N.E., Jr., Melendez, P.A., Oh, B.C., Lidov, H.G., Hasselgren, P.O., Frontera, W.R., Lee, J., Glass, D.J., et al. (2004). IKKbeta/NF-kappaB activation causes severe muscle wasting in mice. Cell 119, 285-298.

5. What do you like most about the IDC?

The people, the collaborative spirit, the freedom and opportunity to develop in research.

3 questions beyond research

1. Which book and/or movie has lately affected you the most?
Book: „Unsere Welt neu denken“ by Maja Göpel
Movie: „Gost dog“ by Jim Jarmusch (1999)

2. What is your hobby?
Karate-Do (martial art originated from Okinawa)

3. What is your favorite color, season and/or football (or other sports) club?

Focusing on football (soccer, to avoid any confusion): I support Eintracht Frankfurt, the Bundesliga club located nearest to the place I grew up in Germany; and Peñarol Montevideo, from the place I was born in Uruguay. I'm in a serious conflict of interest when Germany plays against Uruguay, but eventually the roots seem to weigh more.