23rd September 2023

Award winners 2023

Yesterday evening, talented researchers were awarded
the “Life Sciences Bridge Award 2023”:
Dr. Lukas Bunse and Dr. Johannes Karges. 

The Life Sciences Bridge Award was presented yesterday evening in Frankfurt am Main. The Aventis Foundation honored a physician and a chemist with 100,000 euros in prize money each for their groundbreaking results in cancer research.
With this award, the Aventis Foundation pursues the goal of enabling researchers in the life sciences to work independently at an early stage and to encourage them to implement even unconventional ideas. It aims to promote top-level university research and encourages talented young researchers to stick to an academic career despite uncertain future prospects. The awards will be given to academics with a doctorate or habilitation, junior professors and tenure track professors who aim for an academic career but do not yet hold full and permanent professorship.

As part of his second doctoral thesis, Lukas Bunse, MD, discovered how mutated tumor cells escape the control of the immune system and which signaling pathway they use to do so. As a research physician, he is now developing a new gene therapy with his cell therapy group in the Clinical Cooperation Unit Neuroimmunology and Brain Tumor Immunology of the German Cancer Research Center at Heidelberg University.
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Dr. Lukas Bunse, Prof. Dr. Werner Müller-Esterl

Dr. Johannes Karges has already succeeded preclinically in turning chemotherapy with the metal complex cisplatin, which is feared for its side effects, into a relatively well-tolerated, highly effective precision therapy. Together with his research group at the Ruhr University in Bochum, he is now trying to drive cancer cells into immunogenic cell death using metal complexes, in order to destroy not only the primary tumor but also all metastases.
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Dr. Johannes Karges, Prof. Dr. Rudi Balling

Photos © Uwe Dettmar