Cancer Research in Dresden
To make advances in the fight against cancer, Dresden researchers collaborate with strong partners in different areas of study, ranging from medicine to biology, chemistry and physics.
For cancer diagnostics the Helmholtz-Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf has specialized in developing radioactive drugs utilized in positron emission tomography. These drugs attach to specific tissue structures and thereby enable tumor detection. Radioactive medication could also be used therapeutically in the future to irradiate tumor tissue directly within the body. In addition, the scientists study ways to assist the body's immune system in fighting cancer more efficiently.
In the field of radiooncology, the center is working on the further development of modern radiotherapy. Basic physical research plays an important role in cancer therapy in Dresden: laser accelerator technology is being developed that could allow for more compact and less expensive systems for radiation therapy with protons. In order to achieve a high precision real-time control for this therapy, HZDR scientists work together with colleagues at OncoRay to develop novel detector technologies.
Furthermore, HZDR researchers analyze fundamental metabolic processes in biomembranes. In this way, they decode the manner in which drugs or harmful substances infiltrate the cells and create bonds. The HZDR researchers cooperate closely with the School of Science at the TU Dresden, particularly in the Departments of Chemistry/Food chemistry, Physics and Biology.
- Institute of Radiooncology
- Institute of Radiopharmaceutical Cancer Research
- Institute of Radiation Physics
HZDR maintains a particularly close working relationship with the University Hospital Dresden and the Faculty of Medicine at the Technische Universität (TU) Dresden in the joint National Center for Radiation Research in Oncology Dresden – OncoRay. The objective of OncoRay research is to improve cancer treatment through biologically individualized and technologically optimized radiation therapy. The OncoRay Center, together with the Heidelberg Institute for Radiation Oncology (HIRO), comprises the National Center for Radiation Research in Oncology.
A consortium comprised of the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ), HZDR, the University Hospital and TU Dresden will extend Dresden in the coming years to become a partner location for the National Center for Tumor Diseases (NCT), which is located in Heidelberg. Dresden therefore occupies a central position in German cancer medicine and will substantially expand its research endeavors. Together with the Heidelberg facility, advances in research will be rapidly transferred to concrete therapeutic approaches.
HZDR, TU Dresden and the University Hospital are organized within the German Cancer Consortium (DKTK), representing a DKTK partner location in the city of Dresden. The research focus at the Dresden partner location lies in radiation oncology. Coordination is overseen by Prof. Michael Baumann, director of OncoRay and NCT Dresden. Prof. Baumann is also director of the HZDR Institute of Radiooncology and the Clinic for Radiotherapy and Radiation Oncology at the University Hospital Dresden.
All fields of medicine are represented “under one roof” at the University Cancer Center Dresden (UCC). The UCC therefore can offer comprehensive and multidisciplinary care. It is equipped with state-of-the-art technology required for the diagnosis and treatment of all types of tumors. The UCC is a joint establishment of the University Hospital and the Faculty of Medicine Carl Gustav Carus at the Technische Universität Dresden.
Together with the University Hospital and Faculty of Medicine Carl Gustav Carus HZDR has built up the Universitäts Protonen Therapie Dresden (UPTD). This unique facility in Eastern Germany allows for the treatment of cancer patients at the highest medical level. In clinical studies the efficiency of the new radiation therapy with protons is monitored and optimized. For questions about this therapy patients can contact the University Hospital directly.