Team RSC

RNA Splicing in Cancer

Our team is seeking to identify key molecular mechanisms that generate mRNA splicing abnormalities in cancer. Splicing of mRNA is a crucial process in eukaryotic gene expression regulation. In addition to canonical splicing, which leads to the inclusion of constitutive exons into the mature mRNA, the transcriptome is subject to alternative splicing.

More than 90% of eukaryotic mRNAs undergo alternative splicing, giving rise to multiple protein-coding isoforms from a single precursor mRNA. Alternative splicing is therefore a major determinant for proteome diversity and organism complexity.

Emerging data indicate that aberrant alternative splicing plays a critical role in the pathogenesis of several molecular subtypes of cancer. Such splicing abnormalities can lead to constitutive activity of oncogenes, reduced expression of tumor suppressors, or drug resistance.

By employing transcriptomic and gene-editing technologies combined with mechanistic cellular biology, we explore the interplay of cis- and trans-regulatory splicing elements in cancer. Our goal is to understand how these elements shape the complex pathophysiology of tumor cells, and to identify tumor-specific vulnerabilities for targeted cancer therapy.

  • Mentors
    • Dr. Christina Esdar
      Associate Director TIP Oncology at Merck, Darmstadt, Germany (Industry mentor)
    • Prof. Dr. Andreas Kulozik
      Head of the Department of Pediatric Oncology, Hematology, Immunology and Pulmonology at Children’s Hospital, University of Heidelberg, Germany (Academic mentor)
The research of this team is kindly sponsored by Merck.

Our Team Members

Dr. Jan Mauer

Group Leader

  • Short Bio
    • 2015-2017: Postdoc in RNA biology and epitranscriptomics with Prof. Samie R. Jaffrey at the Department of Pharmacology, Weill Cornell Medicine of Cornell University, New York, USA
    • 2009-2014: Postdoc in mouse models of metabolic and inflammatory diseases with Prof. Jens C. Brüning, at the Institute for Genetics, University of Cologne, Germany and at the Max Planck Institute for Metabolism Research in Cologne, Germany
    • 2004-2009: PhD in Genetics with Prof. Jens C. Brüning at the Institute for Genetics, University of Cologne, Germany
  • Contact

Dr. Alexandra Duarte

Postdoctoral Researcher

  • Short Bio
    • 2013-2018: Research assistant with Dr. Sven Rottenberg and Prof. Jos Jonkers at the Division of Molecular Pathology, Netherlands Cancer Institute, Amsterdam, Netherlands
    • 2012-2013: Postdoc with Dr. Rudiger Woscholski at the Department of Chemistry, Imperial College London, UK
    • 2008-2012: PhD with Dr. David Mann at the Department of Life Sciences, Imperial College London, UK
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Dr. Lina Marcela Gallego Páez

Postdoctoral Researcher

  • Short Bio
    • 2015-2018: Postdoc with Dr. Nuno Morais at the Laboratory of Disease Transcriptomics, Instituto de Medicina Molecular, Lisbon, Portugal
    • 2014-2015: Postdoc with Dr. Raquel Oliveira at the Laboratory of Chromosome Dynamics, Instituto Gulbenkian de Ciencia, Portugal
    • 2010-2014: PhD with Dr. Katsuhiko Shirahige at the Laboratory of Genome Structure and Function, Tokyo Tech/University of Tokyo, Japan
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Arne Knudsen

PhD Student

Marit Krötschel

Research Associate

  • Short Bio
    • 2016-2018: Research Associate, Immunosuppressive Microenvironment of Tumors, BioMed X, Germany
    • 2005–2015: Research Assistant, Max Planck Institute of Immunology and Epigenetics, Freiburg, Germany
    • 2011–2013: Master in Health Sciences, University of Education, Freiburg, Germany
    • 2008–2011: Bachelor in Health Sciences, University of Education, Freiburg, Germany
  • Contact

Carolyn Schneider

Research Assistant

  • Short Bio
    • 2016-2019: Master of Science in Molecular and Cellular Biology, Ruprecht-Karls-Universität, Heidelberg, Germany
    • 2013-2016: Bachelor of Science in Biology, Justus-Liebig-Universität, Gießen, Germany
  • Contact

Team RSC Alumni

At BioMed X we care for the people who work with us. Staying in touch with those who left but mainly contributed to BioMed X’s success is key. That’s why they have their designated place on our website. So let’s keep connected!

Barbara König

Laura Schoppe

Laura Graser

Öykü Ece Tosun

Nikola Biondi

Adina Bleil

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