EValuate: characterization of extracellular vesicles as diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers.

Department Signaling and Functional Genomics, German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) Heidelberg and
Medical Oncology, National Center for Tumor Diseases (NCT) Heidelberg, University Hospital Heidelberg
Applicant: Dr. Antonia Schubert
Funding line:
First and Second Applications

Cells release small membranous vesicles into the body to communicate with their surroundings. Cancer cells use these extracellular vesicles (EVs) to prepare the colonization of distant tissues. Early detection of cancer metastasis is still a major clinical challenge. However, using EVs as cancer markers fails due to a lack of knowledge about EV-mediated cell communication.
In this project, the team will compare novel methods to purify and study EVs, aiming to find an efficient and broadly applicable approach. Communication mechanisms will be examined focusing on the Wnt signaling pathway. Additionally, patient-derived EVs will be characterized and compared with clinical features This will help us to fully exploit the diagnostic and prognostic potential of EVs in the future.