Prof. Tobias Bald awarded with the Lisec-Artz Prize

November 11, 2021

from left: Dagmar Wachten, Sebastian Kobold, Tobias Bald, Gunther Hartmann. (picture: Volker Lannert/Uni Bonn)

 

Tobias Bald and Sebastian Kobold receive research award for their work on Tumor Immunobiology at the Cluster Science Days 2021

Professor Bald heads the research group „Tumor Immunobiology” as part of the Cluster of Excellence „ImmunoSensation2“, and is a member of the Transdisciplinary Research Area (TRA) "Life and Health“, both at the University of Bonn. He is now awarded with the Lisec-Artz price for his contributions to better understand the interactions between cancer cells and immune cells. His research focus is set on the role of the T-cell activating receptor CD226 during this interaction, with the goal to significantly improve cancer immunotherapy.

 

In addition to infections, the immune system also protects against cancer by recognizing and destroying malignant cells at an early stage. Tobias Bald and his team have been trying for years to better understand the interactions between cancer cells and immune cells. Recently, for example, he showed that cancer cells can weaken the immune system in previously unknown ways. Immune cells constantly need positive feedback in their fight against cancer cell. To evade an immune response, cancer cells deprive the immune cells of this positive signals. This weakens the immune cells so that the cancer cells can no longer be destroyed. The knowledge gained here is now to be implemented in cancer immunotherapy. “The tumor-induced loss of T-Cell receptors leads to an overall loss of T-Cell functionality. This phenomenon is what we now try to therapeutically tackle, in order to improve therapy for cancer patients.” Prof. Bald states.

 

The Lisec-Artz Price of 2021 was also awarded to Prof. Sebastian Kobold from the University Clinics of the Ludwig-Maximilians University Munich. Prof. Sebastian Kobold's research is also focused on the development of new treatments for cancer. Prof. Kobold and his team are targeting the body's immune system with synthetic proteins, enabeling immune cells to recognize and destroy cancer cells. At the same time, the method enables the cells of the defense system to migrate into malignant tissue unharmed and in a targeted manner. Prof. Kobold was able to carry out pioneering work in this area, because there is a need for immunotherapies beyond those already available for the treatment of advanced blood cancers like breast, lung or colon cancer.

 

 

Participating institutions and funding:

The Lizec-Artz Prize is donated by the Bonn University Foundation and the Medical Faculty of the University of Bonn and endowed with 10,000 euros. The prize honors outstanding young scientists in cancer research in Germany.

The Cluster of Excellence ImmunoSensation2 at the University of Bonn is funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG).

 

 

Contact:

Prof. Dr. Tobias Bald

Institute of Experimental Oncology

Medical Faculty, University of Bonn
University Hospital of Bonn
Venusberg-Campus 1
53127 Bonn

Tobias.Bald(at)ukbonn.de