Thematic Research NetworkCancer-Neuroscience


The Thematic Research Network Cancer Neuroscience (TRN-CN) is based on the recent discovery that the nervous system has a pivotal role in cancer formation, progression and therapy resistance. Vice versa, tumor diseases can influence neural functions. The nervous system and cancer are inseparably linked at the developmental, structural, molecular, and physiological level. This affects not only the well-being of patients but might also lead to harmful feedback loops. Inherently, research in cancer neuroscience requires a broadly interdisciplinary approach, and stringent reciprocal interactions of various disciplines.

In vier Bildern wird der sogenannte Fahrplan für Cancer-Neuroscience illustriert. Von “electrochemical neural-cancer interactions” über “paracrine neural-cancer interactions” und “systemic neural-cancer interactions” bis hinzu “cancer therapy effects on the nervous system”

Starting from insights and methodologies of modern Neuroscience and Neuromedicine, TRN-CN will develop new insights into neuroscience-based cancer biology, and vice versa.

This will help

  • to resolve challenges in systemic oncology with a closer look at the nervous system involvement
  • to develop novel treatments, supplementing cancer cell-focused (chemo- and radiotherapy) and immune cell-focused (immunotherapy) strategies in oncology

To this end, TRN-CN will build the fundament for a maximum synergism bringing together various disciplines and groups:

  • Oncology/Cancer Research focus of the medical faculty and Field of Focus 1
  • Neuromedicine/Neuroscience focus of the medical faculty and Field of Focus 1
  • the developmental focus of Field of Focus 1
  • the applied mathematics focus of Field of Focus 2
  • associated research institutes in Heidelberg/Mannheim


Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Wick

Prof. Dr. Frank Winkler

Prof. Dr. Anna Marciniak-Czochra