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Christoph Gasche
A.o.Univ.Prof.Dr. Christoph GascheLaboratory on Molecular Cancer Chemoprevention

Department of Medicine III (Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology)
Position: Associate Professor

T +43 1 40400 47640

Further Information


Inflammatory Bowel Diseases; Lynch Syndrome II

Research group(s)

Research interests

My laboratory work is translational with the focus on understanding the pathogenesis of inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD), colitis-associated cancer and pharmacological prevention of colorectal cancer specifically in IBD and Lynch Syndrome. We spent ten years on studying the molecular effects of mesalazine (5-aminosylicylic acid), an old drug with multiple effects. We identified PAK-1 as a target of 5-ASA and are now interested in the role of PAKs in intestinal homeostasis. Another project relates to intestinal dysbiosis in IBD as PAK1 is also a target of the bacterial effector ESPG. I am also running a European consortium for using 5-ASA for chemoprevention of Lynch syndrome.

Another topic (related to IBD) is iron deficiency (ID) and thomboembolism. The lab has demonstrated that ID drives thrombopoiesis (secondary thrombocytosis) and platelet aggregation. Mechanistically this involves HIFs and VEGFs. Now we are looking into animal models of venous and arterial thrombosis to study the role of ID in such. We are also interested in iron as trigger of inflammation and cancer and have identified Fe-EDTA (as used for food supplementation) toxic compound.

Techniques, methods & infrastructure

Molecular biology, cell culture, intestinal mouse organoids, various mouse models (PAK1, IL-10, MSH2, APCmin, AOM-DSS), rat models of iron deficinecy

Access to clinical samples (DNA, RNA, biopsies, surgical specimen) from IBD and CRC


  • Megakaryopoiesis, Thrombosis and Iron Deficiency - MegIron2 (2015)
    Source of Funding: FWF (Austrian Science Fund), Stand-Alone Projects
    Principal Investigator
  • "MesaCapp" - Mesalamine for Colorectal Cancer Prevention Program in Lynch syndrome (2013)
    Source of Funding: FWF (Austrian Science Fund), ERA-Net on Translational Cancer Research
    Coordinator of the collaborative project
  • Interaktion von ebvIL-10 und cmvIL-10 mit IL-10 Rezeptor 1 und dessen humanen Mutanten (2013)
    Source of Funding: OeNB (Oesterreichische Nationalbank), Anniversary Fund
    Principal Investigator
  • Ulcerative colitis and microsatellite instability (2011)
    Source of Funding: FWF (Austrian Science Fund), Stand-Alone Projects
    Principal Investigator
  • Iron and Megakaryopoiesis (2008)
    Source of Funding: FWF (Austrian Science Fund), Stand-Alone Projects
    Principal Investigator

Selected publications

  1. Dammann, K. et al., 2015. PAK1 Promotes Intestinal Tumor Initiation. Cancer Prevention Research, 8(11), pp.1093-1101. Available at:
  2. Jimenez, K. et al., 2015. Increased expression of HIF2α during iron deficiency-associated megakaryocytic differentiation. Journal of Thrombosis and Haemostasis, 13(6), pp.1113-1127. Available at:
  3. Kortu'
  4. Lang, M. et al., 2013. Thymoquinone attenuates tumor growth in ApcMin mice by interference with Wnt-signaling. Mol Cancer, 12(1), p.41. Available at:
  5. Khare, V. et al., 2013. Mesalamine modulates intercellular adhesion through inhibition of p-21 activated kinase-1. Biochemical Pharmacology, 85(2), pp.234-244. Available at: