Radiocarcinogenesis

Cytogenetic aberrations are important hallmarks in cancer development and can be induced by ionising radiation. Therefore, they may represent biomarkers of radiation exposure, prognosis or therapy response. They also are important endpoints of radiation-induced misrepair. Research on radiation-induced carcinogenesis therefore focus on chromosome aberrations that serve as starting points for mechanistic studies of radiation-induced carcinogenesis. This involves

  • global analysis of rearrangements and copy number alterations in human and murine tissues
  • Interphase cell nuclei analysis in tissue sections
  • FISH-based analysis of candidate genes
  • cytogenetic characterisation of cell culture models and stem cells
  • quantification of chromosomal aberrations after radiation exposure
  • repair mechanisms related to the PC4 gene

Complementary to the research on radiocarcinogenesis also novel fluorescent imaging proteins are developed that find usage in the field of radiobiology. In particular, such proteins are used in intravital and whole-body imaging for which the spectra must reside in the window where tissue penetration by light is at a maximum and interference by haemoglobin, tissue chromophores and water are at a minimum (effective diagnostic and therapeutic window: 650-900 nm). This involves

  • development of a far-red shifted fluorescent protein
  • development of fluorescent proteins that are needed for the investigation of radiation sensitivity, cancer growth/development, live-cell labelling.

Our main research aims are

  • characterisation of cytogenetic aberrations in radiation-induced cancer
  • characterisation of radiation effects on a cytogenetic level
  • identification of repair mechanisms related to PC4
  • development of biosensing fluorescent protein

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