Award for Outstanding Cancer Research

Press Release No. 175/2012
13 July 2012
Neurooncologist Dr. Christiane Opitz to receive 2012 Hella Bühler Prize of 100,000 euros
Opitz Christiane
Dr. Christiane Opitz

Physician scientist Dr. Christiane Opitz of Heidelberg University is this year’s recipient of the Hella Bühler Prize, which is endowed with 100,000 euros. This is the seventh time the prize has been awarded. It is aimed at young researchers at Ruperto Carola whose outstanding cancer research has garnered well-deserved attention. The prize monies will support Dr. Opitz’ future research work on brain tumours at Heidelberg University Hospital and the German Cancer Research Centre (DKFZ). The presentation ceremony will take place on Friday, 20 July 2012.

Christiane Opitz (b. 1979) studied medicine at Heidelberg University, simultaneously completing a master’s degree programme in molecular cell biology. In 2006 she earned her doctorate from the Heidelberg Faculty of Medicine. Dr. Opitz initially worked as an assistant physician in the Department of Neurology of the University Hospital Tübingen before joining the Department of Neurooncology of Heidelberg University Hospital in the same capacity. As a postdoctoral researcher, she is part of the Helmholtz University Young Investigator‘s Group Experimental Neuroimmunology of the DKFZ.

Dr. Opitz’ research focusses on malignant gliomas, the most frequent type of brain tumours in adults. Of particular interest is the targeted inhibition of signalling pathways that contribute to the malignant phenotype of the gliomas. In addition to contributing to basic scientific research, the scientist hopes to develop new approaches to treatment.

Prof. Dr. Karlheinz Sonntag, Vice Rector of Heidelberg University, will open the presentation ceremony for the Hella Bühler Prize. After a look back by the 2011 prize recipients, Prof. Dr. Wolfgang Wick, Medical Director of the Department of Neurooncology, will deliver the laudatory speech honouring Dr. Opitz. The award recipient’s speech will explore by which signalling pathways the endogenous activation of the dioxin receptor promotes the malignant nature of brain tumours. The ceremony will be held in the large lecture hall of dentistry, Im Neuenheimer Feld 400, and starts at 5.30 pm.

The research prize, endowed by Heidelberg dentist Dr. Hella Bühler (1910 to 2002), is aimed at supporting young Heidelberg researchers to continue and deepen their ongoing excellent work in the field of cancer research.

Note to news desks:
A digital portrait photo of the prize recipient can be obtained from the Press Office.

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