German Consortium for Translational Cancer Research (DKTK)

Molecular Diagnostics of Colorectal Cancer


The overall aim of the molecular diagnostics program for colorectal cancer is the identification and validations of novel biomarkers and their implementation as standardized diagnostic tools for cancer patient stratification prior to chemotherapeutic and targeted therapy.

The current research aims i) at the identification and application of known and novel DNA methylation and histone modification - based biomarkers and ii) the identification and application of mRNA expression - and mutation-based biomarkers for predicting colorectal cancer (CRC) patient’s treatment-responses to oxaliplatin (OX) and irinotectan (IRI) as well as EGFR- and HDAC-inhibitors.


Despite several (epi-)genetic alterations identified in CRC, metastasized CRC remains a major challenge to interdisciplinary oncology. This specifically applies to the understanding of the regulatory molecular and epi-/genetic mechanisms involved in signaling pathways that are therapeutically targeted by specific inhibitors, such as EGFR by Cetuximab and histone acetylation by histone deacetylase inhibitors (HDACs). Hence, there is an urgent need to develop sophisticated and standardized approaches in molecular diagnostics to predict the response of CRC patients to current chemotherapeutic and targeted treatments with highest accuracy.


More information about Opens external link in current windowDKTK



Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum Heidelberg, DKFZ

Ludwig Maximilian University Munich, LMU

Technical University Munich

Freiburg University

Universitätsklinikum Carl Gustav Carus, Dresden


Supported by: BMBF 12/2012- 12/2015

Group leader

Prof. Dr. rer. nat. Christine Sers
Head of group Mol. Tumor Pathology, Head of group Tumor Systems Biology
t: +49 30 450 536 185