12 October 2021
“I need to know that what I do matters”
Despite her busy schedule, physician-scientist, gastroesophageal cancer specialist and Oncode Investigator Sarah Derks (Amsterdam UMC, VUmc site) took time out to participate in the Darm to Darm cycling challenge: a charity biking race from Amsterdam to Darmstadt (Germany). What motivated her to do so, and what makes her tick both professionally and personally?
1 October 2021
Two Oncode researchers win the International Birnstiel Award
Oncode Institute is proud to announce that two Oncode researchers have won the 2021 International Birnstiel Award for Doctoral Studies in Molecular Life Sciences. Sanne Boersma (Hubrecht Institute, Marvin Tanenbaum Group) and Sanne van Neerven (Amsterdam University Medical Center, Louis Vermeulen Group) are among the six winners this year.
30 September 2021
Science meets forest in the heart of the Netherlands: highlights of Oncode’s first Postdoc Retreat
Here is a recipe: take a group of postdoc researchers from different Oncode labs and bring them to De Werelt, this beautiful and calm location in the middle of the Netherlands, surrounded by forest. Have them stay for two days. Add scientific sessions covering a wide variety of topics and alternate with collaborative pitches for participants. Add two keynote lectures, a debate, a poster session and an extensive workshop on Intellectual Property and Entrepreneurship as well. Season it all with exploratory career discussions, with five different guests working in different fields. Finally, mix in lots of breaks for informal talks and networking. The result is Oncode’s first Postdoc Retreat that took place last week.
28 September 2021
History of successful STRIP consortium published in Nature Biotechnology
In March 2020, Oncode Investigators Marvin Tanenbaum and Wouter de Laat (group leaders at the Hubrecht Institute) brought together a large group of researchers at the Hubrecht Institute to support the Netherlands in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic. At that time, testing for COVID was extremely difficult. The researchers got in touch with scientists at Genmab, specialists in molecular biology automation, and together started the STRIP consortium. STRIP developed and implemented a test robot (lovingly called ‘the Beast’) with the capacity to make PCR testing possible on a much larger scale and more cost effective. The test protocol, as well as a history of this extraordinary consortium, is now published in Nature Biotechnology.
28 September 2021
Paving the way for treatment of AML patients with EVI1 gene expression
Amongst AML (acute myeloid leukemia) patients, a subgroup in which the EVI1 gene is overexpressed has a very poor outcome, with low response to treatment and a high need for new treatment strategies. The activation of this oncogene is caused by chromosomal rearrangements on the long arm of chromosome 3. The exact mechanism was however unclear. Previous work from Oncode Investigator Ruud Delwel’s group at Erasmus MC showed that in both inv(3)/t(3;3) as well as other 3q26 rearranged AMLs, an enhancer is hijacked and drives oncogenic expression of EVI1. Now two new manuscripts of his group, of which one published today in Nature Communications, report on the mechanisms that cause overexpression of this EVI1 oncogene, which may provide new angles to identify strategies to modulate EVI1 expression for treatment of AML.
Fundamental science, clinical testing and a sharp mind for market opportunities: at Oncode we bring it all together to create impact for patients.
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