In the last decades, surgical oncology has been one of the disciplines of modern medicine, in which most impressive progress has been made: For a long time, surgical treatment was the only option for most patients, many of whom had to be classified as inoperable due to limited possibilities.
Due to modern surgical techniques and the opportunity to shrink primary inoperable tumors through preoperative chemotherapy, surgical treatments have greatly improved.
Unfortunately, however, tumors from the upper gastrointestinal tract tend to recur despite complete surgical removal.
Due to modern chemotherapy a significant prolongation of survival can be achived. However, tumors have been observed to react differently to identical treatment. Therefore, treatments designed individually for each tumor would signifcantly improve chances of full recovery. However, many tumor-promoting mechanisms of the upper gastrointestinal tract are unkown yet. As the past has shown, this knowledge will be essential for the development of new, more effective therapies.
The aim of our research is to identify the mechanisms of initiation and progression of tumors of the upper gastrointestinal (esophageal and gastric cancer and GIST). In particular, our focus lies on the exploration of pathways that represent potential or already established approaches for “targeted therapies”.
Our research employs a wide variety of investigative techniques, e.g. immunohistology, fluoresecent in situ hybridization, confocal microscopy, DNA arrays (RT-) PCR, capillary sequencing, next generation sequencing, cell culture experiments, ELISA, etc. In the context of our projects we also cooperate with domestic and international, academic and industrial partners.