Christoph Wiesner´s group has a long-lasting experience in drug discovery and in the development of novel cell-based and organotypic test systems for drug screening. Therefore, his group has built up core competences in the establishment of 3-dimensional models such as full skin equivalents, miniaturized homo- and heterotypic tumor spheroids as well as the development of high-throughput migration/invasion assays (Kreiseder et al., 2012; Amatschek et al., 2011; Wiesner et al., 2008). Further expertise includes the isolation, identification and characterization of novel bioactive anticancer, anti-infective, anti-inflammatory and wound-healing promoting metabolites (Plueger et al., 2012; Wiesner et al., 2007).
His research interests focus on cellular and molecular mechanisms regulating melanoma progression and the identification of novel targets for melanoma therapy. One of those targets is α-catulin (CTNNAL1), an IKK-interacting protein that augments NF-kappaB activation and mediates its crosstalk with other pathways such as Rho signalling (Wiesner et al., 2008). Dr Wiesner group clearly demonstrated that α-catulin is highly expressed in melanoma cells and presents a key driver of the metastatic process (Kreiseder et al., 2012). His group is now investigating the role of α-catulin in MAP Kinase signalling pathways and the potential of α-catulin for therapeutic interference.
He is also attempting to isolate and identify novel bioactive substances that specifically inhibit melanoma progression or promote apoptosis in melanoma cells.
Functional characterization of α-catulin (CTNNAL1) and validation as specific target for melanoma therapy
Establishment of 3-dimensional test systems (organotypic skin models, homo- and heterotypic tumor spheroids, 3D cell migration assays for high throughput screening…)
Isolation, identification and characterization of novel marine-derived anticancer (and/or anti-infective, anti-inflammatory) agents
techniques and infrastructure of the research group:
Cell Culture Techniques (beside standard techniques): Construction of human 3D homo- and heterotypic tumor spheroids, 3D skin equivalents, 3D migration assays, transfection and lentiviral infection methods (S2 Lab). Microbiology and Analytics: Cultivation of marine organisms (marine fungi), isolation and characterization of bioactive substances (chromatography, HPLC-MS)
Infrastructure (beside the standard equipment): Fluorescence microscope with Live Cell Imaging (Axio Observer Zeiss), Flow Cytometer, Multiplate Reader (Tecan), ChemiDoc System (BioRad), Microtome (Histocom), PCR Device, Electrical Cell-Substrate Impedance Sensing Device (ECIS; Ibidi), Chromatography (Silica, Sephadex LH-20), HPLC-MS (amazon SL, Bruker).
Birgit Kreiseder, Lukas Orel, Constantin Bujnow, Stefan Buschek, Maren Pflueger, Wolfgang Schuett, Harald Hundsberger, Rainer de Martin and Christoph Wiesner (2012).α-Catulin down-regulates E-cadherin and promotes Melanoma Progression and Invasion, International Journal of Cancer (IJC) 26. doi: 10.1002/ijc.27698. [Epub ahead of print].
Stefan Amatschek, Rudolf Lucas, Andreas Eger, Maren Pflueger, Harald Hundsberger, Christian Knoll, Stefanie Grosse-Kracht, Wolfgang Schuett, Frieder Koszik, Dieter Maurer and Christoph Wiesner (2011). Tumor Endothelial Cell-generated CXCL9 Induces Chemorepulsion, Chemotaxis and Endothelial Barrier disruption through CXCR3-mediated activation of melanoma cells, British Journal of Cancer (BJC) Feb 1;104 (3):469-79.
Christoph Wiesner, Gabriele Winsauer, Ulrike Resch, Martina Hoeth, Johannes A. Schmid, Jolanda van Hegel, Frans van Roy, Bernd R. Binder and Rainer de Martin (2008). alpha-Catulin, a Rho signalling component, can regulate NF-kappaB through binding to IKK-beta, and confers resistance to apoptosis. 0ncogene, 27, 2159–2169
Christoph Wiesner, Jiri Kopecki, Maren Pflueger, Harald Hundsberger, Barbara Entler, Christoph Kleber, Josef Atzler, Dalibor Stys, Wolfgang Schuett, and Rudolf Lucas (2007). Novel cell-based Methods for the detection of cyanobacterial anti-inflammatory and wound-healing promoting metabolites. Drug Metabolism Letters, Vl. 1 No.3
Christoph Wiesner, Martina Hoeth, Bernd Binder and Rainer de Martin. A functional screening assay for the isolation of transcription factors (2002). Nucleic Acids Research, Vol. 30 No. 16 e80