Division - Neuroendocrinology
In the Neuroendocrinology Division at IDC we investigate the interplay between tumors and both local and organismal metabolism by employing various relevant experimental models and imaging methods.
Till now, we mainly focused on neuroendocrine tumors (NETs) as experimental models. NETs secrete hormones that act on distant organs thereby exerting widespread systemic effects on metabolism, digestion, cardiovascular function, but also secrete metabolites acting locally on vascular endothelial cells and adipocytes in the tumor microenvironment. The Neuroendocrinology Division investigates the mechanisms regulating neuroendocrine cell function and transformation in vitro (cells lines, organotypic cultures), as well as the local and systemic effects of NET development in genetically-defined in vivo models. To help translation of our pre-clinical studies to clinical settings, we are part of the Collaborative Research Center SFB824 and the Transregio/Collaborative Research Center TR/CRC205, which provide our projects with strategic clinical collaborations.
Adipocytes can stimulate the growth and survival of cancer cells by releasing cytokines and fatty acids. As part of the Marie Curie Training Network TRAIN, the Neuroendocrinology Division is exploring the role of Tribbles pseudokinases (a type of inactive enzymes) in the cross-talk between adipocytes and tumor cells in various cancer models.
Identifying causes and risk factors for type 2 diabetes (T2D) is critical to decrease associated morbidity and mortality. Given that chronic low-grade inflammation is an important trigger for the development of T2D, we intend to study the impact of CMV-associated chronic inflammation on the outcome and treatment of T2D.