What is cancer immunology

German Cancer Aid honors outstanding researchers

Bonn (gb) - On the occasion of World Cancer Day, the German Cancer Aid will award the German Cancer Aid Prize 2013 on February 4, 2014 as part of a ceremony. The two scientists, Professor Dr. Hans-Jochem Kolb and Professor Dr. Hans-Georg Rammenee for their pioneering work in the field of immunotherapy. Dr. Fritz Pleitgen, President of the organization, presented the high-level award in the Old Town Hall in Bonn. The German Cancer Aid Prize is endowed with 10,000 euros each.

“As a new treatment method, immunotherapy has become more and more important in recent years,” says Hans-Peter Krämer, CEO of the German Cancer Aid, on the occasion of the award. "In December, the renowned US trade magazine 'Science' named important advances in this area as the Scientific Discovery of 2013 - a development in which the two award winners also played a major role."

Since the 1980s, scientists around the world have been working on strengthening the body's own defense system in the defense against cancer cells. Advances in research make therapies more and more efficient. "The great gain in knowledge over the past few years shows what enormous potential there is in these therapeutic methods," explains Krämer.

Professor Dr. Hans-Georg Rammenee is Director of the Immunology Department at the Interfaculty Institute for Cell Biology at the University of Tübingen. The biologist is honored for his research on antigen presentation and T-cell recognition, which have led to fundamental findings on tumor recognition by the immune system. Antigens are molecular structures on the surface of pathogens or cancer cells that are recognized by the T cells of the body's defenses. These then initiate an immune response against the foreign body.

Professor Rammenee has headed the Immunology Department at the University of Tübingen since 1996. In 2002 he co-founded the Competence Network Immunological Cancer Therapy e.V. and is also a member of the board. In addition, he is a member of the German Consortium for Translational Cancer Research. There he is co-coordinator of the research program “Cancer Immunology and Immunotherapy”.

Professor Dr. Hans-Jochem Kolb from the Klinikum rechts der Isar of the Technical University of Munich and the Städtisches Klinikum München, receives the award for his pioneering work in the field of cellular immunotherapy and for his services in stem cell transplantation. The aim of cellular immunotherapy is to destroy the patient's tumor with cells from healthy donors or to keep them in check without harming the patient.

From 1977 Professor Kolb was active in the German Working Group for Bone Marrow Transplantation, from 1993 to 1997 he was its president. From 1999 the physician was head of the clinical cooperation group and the unit for hematopoietic cell transplantation at the Ludwig Maximilians University Hospital in Munich. Since his retirement in 2009, he has worked in an advisory capacity for the Klinikum rechts der Isar at the Technical University of Munich.

With the award of the German Cancer Aid Prize, the organization complies with Dr. Wilhelm Hoffmann after: In 1996 he left the Deutsche Krebshilfe a notable inheritance linked to the condition that the proceeds should be invested with interest and that the proceeds be used to award an annual prize for outstanding work in oncology.

Source: German Cancer Aid e.V.