Top international researchers working together in the bio- and engineering sciences on intelligent solutions for personalized healthcare gathered to discuss the latest developments in biotechnology, bioengineering, sensor technology and nanotechnology as well as biointelligent systems and robotics in a relaxed atmosphere - a great opportunity for three new tenure-track professors to introduce themselves and their research and be welcomed in the local scientific community.
Jun.-Prof. Franziska Traube: New insights into the formation and development of cancer cells
Junior professor Franziska Traube is aiming to gain new insights into the formation and development of cancer cells. Among other things, she aims to decipher how metabolic processes influence the characteristics of tumor cells at different stages of development and disease. How do tumor cells acquire their unique characteristics that enable them to adapt to new environments during metastasis, develop drug resistance or evade treatment? This is one of the central questions that Traube and her team want to investigate. Their goal: To generate knowledge that can later be used to find precise prognostic markers and develop new treatments that would otherwise be difficult to achieve in order to eliminate dormant cancer cells.
Franziska Traube has headed the Department of Biochemistry of Cellular Biomedical Systems at the Institute of Biochemistry and Technical Biochemistry (IBTB) at the University of Stuttgart since June 2023. Prior to this, she started her independent research group at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (LMU) in October 2021 and became a Liebig Fellow at the TUM School of Natural Sciences in August 2022. Traube completed her doctoral degree in organic chemistry at LMU in 2020.
Jun. Prof. Amirreza Aghakhani: Intelligent microrobots for biomedical applications
Junior Professor Amirreza Aghakhani focuses primarily on the development of intelligent microrobots for biomedical applications, such as the targeted administration of drugs, microsurgery or detoxification and diagnostics. To this end, he is further developing micro- and nanofabrication processes and ultrasonic technologies. The movement of microrobots in complex biological environments, precise imaging and the efficient transportation of drugs to diseased areas are challenges that Aghakani and his research group want to solve. Their aim is to close the gap between biomedical laboratory research and clinical applications and bring medical microrobots to the forefront of modern healthcare.
Aghakhani heads the Microrobotic Biomedical Systems group at the Institute of Biochemistry and Technical Biochemistry Institute of Biomaterials and Biomolecular Systems at the University of Stuttgart and is a fellow of the international doctoral program IMPRS-IS (The International Max Planck Research School for Intelligent Systems). Previously, he was an assistant professor of mechanical engineering at Newcastle University. Aghakhani completed his doctoral degree in mechanical engineering at Koc University in Turkey in 2018.
Jun.-Prof. Chengzhe Tian: Research on drugs for preventing tumor recurrence
Junior Professor Chengzhe Tian is investigating why tumors often return after standard treatment and aims to help develop drugs that are better able to prevent so-called recurrences, enabling cancer patients to live a healthy life and extending their life expectancy. Why do certain cancer cells resist treatment and continue to divide resulting in tumor recurrence? To answer this question, Tian uses fluorescent proteins, so-called "molecular lamps", to look directly into the cancer cells. He treats them with drugs, records how the cells react to the treatments using microscopically generated images and then examines the data from each individual cell using computational tools - an analysis that should provide information about which cancer cells resist treatment and why.
Tian leads the group Signaling Dynamics of Cellular Biomedical Systems at the university of Stuttgart's Institute of Cell Biology and Immunology(IZI). He previously conducted research at the Research Center for Molecular Medicine of the Austrian Academy of Sciences (CeMM), at the University of Boulder, Colorado and at ETH Zurich, among others. Tian completed his doctoral degree in biophysics at the University of Copenhagen in 2017.