Visiting Professor of women’s cancer at the Department of Women’s and Children’s Health from July 1, 2020. Primary position: Professor of Women’s Cancer at the University of Innsbruck, Austria, and the University College London, UK.
Professor Martin Widschwendter’s research focuses on cancers of the breast, uterus, cervix, and ovaries, with his long-term goal being the elimination of women-specific cancers. His research spans four areas: mechanisms of disease, risk assessment, prevention, and early diagnosis. His mechanisms of disease research comprises, amongst other considerations, why the BRCA1 gene leads to a much higher risk particularly for breast cancer, and how women with BRCA1 have elevated levels of progesterone during certain phases of the menstrual cycle.
His risk assessment research focuses on epigenetic markers in cervical samples and has been carried out with a number of collaborators including Joakim Dillner’s research team at KI. Professor Widschwendter has an established collaboration project with Kristina Gemzell Danielsson’s research team at KI regarding the use of progesterone antagonists as potential prevention. His research on early diagnosis focuses on the detection of tumour DNA in blood samples, with the aim of developing a screening programme.
Text: From Cell to Society, 2020