Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Brupbacher Prize goes to B. Vogelstein & J. Hoeijmakers for research on colorectal and skin cancer

17.02.2011
Today, the Charles Rodolphe Brupbacher Prize for Cancer Research 2011 goes to two researchers who have contributed to better understanding of the genetics underlying the growth of tumors.

Oncologist Bert Vogelstein has demonstrated how sequential accumulation of mutations leads to colorectal cancer, and Jan H. Hoeijmakers has conducted breakthrough research in xeroderma, a hereditary disease causing skin cancer.

For the tenth time, the Charles Rodolphe Brupbacher Prize will be awarded in conjunction with an international symposium. The prize of 100,000 Swiss francs for each scientist, is one of the world’s most prestigious honors in cancer research. The prize is awarded every two years to investigators who have made outstanding contributions to oncology. The symposium will also honor five junior researchers who will receive a Young Investigator Award.

This year's Brupbacher Prize goes to Prof. Bert Vogelstein of the John Hopkins University in Baltimore (USA) and to Prof. Jan. H. Hoeijmakers of Erasmus University, Rotterdam (Netherlands). The findings of both researchers have contributed greatly to the understanding of the genetic basis of tumor growth. Bert Vogelstein's main area of research is colorectal cancer, Jan Hoeijmakers' is skin cancer. The particular significance of their findings lies in their general relevance: Cancer of the colon and rectum is closely linked to lifestyle of Western populations and is the second-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in Europe. Hoeijmakers’ findings do not only shed light on skin tumors, but also on premature aging.

Bert Vogelstein

Bert Vogelstein ranks among the most-quoted scientists in the field of biomedicine. He is best-known for his groundbreaking work on the genesis of cancer of the colon. Tumors in the large intestine (colon) lend themselves particularly well to analysis because their progression from a benign growth to a malignant tumor can be clinically observed by means of colonoscopies.

Vogelstein has observed that initial, small accumulations of atypical cells are caused by a mutation of the APC gene, a tumor-suppressor gene that controls cell division. The mutation of the APC gene is also responsible for inherited familial adenomatous polyposis, a disease characterized by a great number of polyps in the intestinal wall. If not removed, these polyps can develop into colon cancer.

Additional mutations activate genes coding for growth factors (oncogenes).as well as in other tumor suppressor genes. All of these DNA mutations mediate a slow but steady growth from initially small, then larger benign polyps that then progress into a carcinoma. Although it takes an average of 17 years for a small polyp to develop into a carcinoma, the process then accelerates, leading typically within two more years to a highly malignant carcinoma that metastasizes to regional lymph nodes and distant organs.

Vogelstein's findings on the sequential accumulation of mutations and tumor growth have received wide-spread recognition and provide the basis for prevention, early diagnosis and treatment of colorectal cancer. Vogelstein has recently begun analyzing entire cancer genomes, i.e. the sum of all genes in a cell. Understanding the genetic make-up of a tumor provides the basis for personalized tumor therapy, a major goal in clinical oncology.

Jan H. Hoeijmakers

Jan Hoeijmakers has made an outstanding contribution by elucidating the molecular basis of hereditary diseases caused by defective DNA repair. There are multiple pathways for the repair of damaged DNA. If left unrepaired, this increases the risk of several diseases, including cancer. Dr. Hoeijmakers has performed innovative research on xeroderma pigmentosum, a hereditary skin disease that is characterized by extreme sensitivity to UV rays and the development of multiple, often malignant tumors in skin regions exposed to sunlight. Ultraviolet rays cause damage involving chemical links between coding DNA bases, particularly thymine. During cell division and in the absence of efficient repair, this leads to permanent mutations in daughter cells. Patients affected by xeroderma pigmentosum demonstrate a reduced DNA repair capacity.

Hoeijmakers identified and characterized multiple genes involved in the repair process. He was able to show that certain forms of limited DNA repair capacity can bring about the exact opposite of a tumor, namely premature aging.

A complex DNA repair system ensures the stability of our genome. Jan Hoeijmakers has earned international recognition for having identified key aspects of the molecular basis of DNA repair and the role it plays in both, the development of tumors and in premature aging.

The foundation:
The Charles Rodolphe Brupbacher Foundation was founded in 1991 by Mme. Frédérique Brupbacher in memory of her husband, Charles Rodolphe Brupbacher. The foundation is affiliated with the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Zurich. More information on the foundation is available at www.brupbacher-stiftung.ch
Contact information:
Prof. Paul Kleihues
C.R. Brupbacher Stiftung
c/o Dean's Office, Faculty of Medicine
University of Zurich
Phone: +41 79 738 34 72
E-Mail: brupbacher-stiftung@dekmed.uzh.ch

Beat Müller | idw
Further information:
http://www.mediadesk.uzh.ch/articles/2011/brupbacher-preis-2011_en.html
http://www.mediadesk.uzh.ch/articles/2011/brupbacher-preis-2011.html

More articles from Awards Funding:

nachricht MaterialVital Preis 2019 awarded for novel hydrogel wound dressings
05.09.2019 | Leibniz-Institut für Polymerforschung Dresden e. V.

nachricht Decoding cell communication
13.06.2019 | Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg

All articles from Awards Funding >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Stevens team closes in on 'holy grail' of room temperature quantum computing chips

Photons interact on chip-based system with unprecedented efficiency

To process information, photons must interact. However, these tiny packets of light want nothing to do with each other, each passing by without altering the...

Im Focus: Happy hour for time-resolved crystallography

Researchers from the Department of Atomically Resolved Dynamics of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg, the University of Hamburg and the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) outstation in the city have developed a new method to watch biomolecules at work. This method dramatically simplifies starting enzymatic reactions by mixing a cocktail of small amounts of liquids with protein crystals. Determination of the protein structures at different times after mixing can be assembled into a time-lapse sequence that shows the molecular foundations of biology.

The functions of biomolecules are determined by their motions and structural changes. Yet it is a formidable challenge to understand these dynamic motions.

Im Focus: Modular OLED light strips

At the International Symposium on Automotive Lighting 2019 (ISAL) in Darmstadt from September 23 to 25, 2019, the Fraunhofer Institute for Organic Electronics, Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP, a provider of research and development services in the field of organic electronics, will present OLED light strips of any length with additional functionalities for the first time at booth no. 37.

Almost everyone is familiar with light strips for interior design. LED strips are available by the metre in DIY stores around the corner and are just as often...

Im Focus: Tomorrow´s coolants of choice

Scientists assess the potential of magnetic-cooling materials

Later during this century, around 2060, a paradigm shift in global energy consumption is expected: we will spend more energy for cooling than for heating....

Im Focus: The working of a molecular string phone

Researchers from the Department of Atomically Resolved Dynamics of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg, the University of Potsdam (both in Germany) and the University of Toronto (Canada) have pieced together a detailed time-lapse movie revealing all the major steps during the catalytic cycle of an enzyme. Surprisingly, the communication between the protein units is accomplished via a water-network akin to a string telephone. This communication is aligned with a ‘breathing’ motion, that is the expansion and contraction of the protein.

This time-lapse sequence of structures reveals dynamic motions as a fundamental element in the molecular foundations of biology.

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

Optical Technologies: International Symposium „Future Optics“ in Hannover

19.09.2019 | Event News

Society 5.0: putting humans at the heart of digitalisation

10.09.2019 | Event News

Interspeech 2019 conference: Alexa and Siri in Graz

04.09.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

DGIST achieves the highest efficiency of flexible CZTSSe thin-film solar cell

19.09.2019 | Power and Electrical Engineering

NTU Singapore scientists develop technique to observe radiation damage over femtoseconds

19.09.2019 | Physics and Astronomy

Optical Technologies: International Symposium „Future Optics“ in Hannover

19.09.2019 | Event News

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>