Kai Rothkamm

Kai Rothkamm
University Medical Center Hamburg - Eppendorf · Department of Radiotherapy and Radio-Oncology

Dipl Phys, Dr rer nat

About

251
Publications
29,891
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Introduction
My fundamental research interests focus on radiation-induced DNA double-strand breaks and their repair. My translational interests include i) the establishment and utilisation of biomarkers of radiation exposure and effect and ii) the development of strategies for molecular-targeted tumour radiosensitisation, based on tumour-specific deficiencies in the DNA damage response. See www.tinyurl.com/ukelero for our current research.
Additional affiliations
April 2017 - present
University Medical Center Hamburg - Eppendorf
Position
  • Managing Director
February 2015 - present
University Medical Center Hamburg - Eppendorf
Position
  • Principal Investigator
March 2008 - January 2015
Public Health England
Position
  • Senior Scientific Group Leader
Education
April 1991 - June 2017

Publications

Publications (251)
Article
Full-text available
Purpose Immune checkpoint inhibition is a therapeutic option in many cancer entities. In head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) targeting of the PD-1/PD-L1 (B7-H1) axis is approved in recurrent/metastatic disease and is being explored in the curative setting. Here, we evaluated two related members of the B7 family, B7-H3 & B7-H4, for their p...
Article
Medulloblastoma (WHO grade 4) is the most common malignant brain tumor of childhood. Despite the high importance of radiotherapy for disease control, the mechanisms underlying response and resistance to radiotherapy are incompletely understood. Therefore, we assessed the radiosensitivity and DNA repair capacity of medulloblastoma cell lines in-vitr...
Article
Full-text available
Patients with human papillomavirus-positive squamous cell carcinoma of the head and neck (HPV+ HNSCC) have a favorable prognosis compared to those with HPV-negative (HPV−) ones. We have shown previously that HPV+ HNSCC cell lines are characterized by enhanced radiation sensitivity and impaired DNA double-strand break (DSB) repair. Since then, vario...
Chapter
The retrospective assessment of radiation exposures using quantitative biomarkers related to dose is well established for the purpose of biological dosimetry. Among the range of candidate biomarkers that could be used to estimate the dose received by a person, DNA damage-associated markers play a prominent role. One of the hallmarks of ionising rad...
Article
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The receptor tyrosine kinase Axl is described to promote migration, metastasis and resistance against molecular targeting, radiotherapy, and chemotherapy in various tumor entities, including head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC). Since clinical data on Axl and its ligand Gas6 in HNSCC are sparse, we assessed the association of Axl and Gas6...
Article
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Cancer stem cells (CSCs) are a major cause of tumor therapy failure. This is mainly attributed to increased DNA repair capacity and immune escape. Recent studies have shown that functional DNA repair via homologous recombination (HR) prevents radiation-induced accumulation of DNA in the cytoplasm, thereby inhibiting the intracellular immune respons...
Article
Background HPV-positive head and neck squamous cell carcinoma of the oropharynx (OPSCC) are more sensitive towards radiation than HPV-negative OPSCC. Two main theories exist regarding the underlying mechanism. Stronger lymphocyte infiltration points to an enhanced immunogenicity, whereas data from HPV-positive HNSCC cell lines suggest an enhanced c...
Article
Full-text available
Background The oncogene epidermal growth factor receptor variant III (EGFRvIII) is expressed in approximately one third of all glioblastoma (GBM). So far it is not clear if EGFRvIII expression induces replication stress in GBM cells, which might serve as a therapeutical target. Methods Isogenetic EGFRvIII- and EGFRvIII+ cell lines with endogenous...
Article
Objectives The use of primary tumor tissue in experimental and pre-clinical cancer research is becoming increasingly important. Especially the use of tissue slice cultures of tumor specimen, so called ex vivo cultures or tumor explants, promises functional analysis under approximate physiological conditions. This includes screening and testing of t...
Article
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The growing field of cellular therapies in regenerative medicine and oncology calls for more refined diagnostic tools that are able to investigate and monitor the function and success of said therapies. X-ray Fluorescence Imaging (XFI) can be applied for molecular imaging with nanoparticles, such as gold nanoparticles (GNPs), which can be used in i...
Article
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Immunotherapy has been a breakthrough in cancer treatment, yet only a subgroup of patients responds to these novel drugs. Parameters such as cytotoxic T-cell infiltration into the tumor have been proposed for the early evaluation and prediction of therapeutic response, demanded for non-invasive, sensitive and longitudinal imaging. We have evaluated...
Article
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In head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC), tumors positive for human papillomavirus (HPV) represent a distinct biological entity with favorable prognosis. An enhanced radiation sensitivity of these tumors is evident in the clinic and on the cellular level when comparing HPV-positive and HPV-negative HNSCC cell lines. We could show that the u...
Article
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This study aimed to investigate the impact of chronic low-level exposure to chemical carcinogens with different modes of action on the cellular response to ionising radiation. Human lymphoblastoid GM1899A cells were cultured in the presence of 4-nitroquinoline N-oxide (4NQO), N-nitroso-N-methylurea (MNU) and hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) for up to 6 mon...
Article
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Signal transduction via protein kinases is of central importance in cancer biology and treatment. However, the clinical success of kinase inhibitors is often hampered by a lack of robust predictive biomarkers, which is also caused by the discrepancy between kinase expression and activity. Therefore there is a need for functional tests to identify a...
Article
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Quantitative cellular in vitro nanoparticle uptake measurements are possible with a large number of different techniques, however, all have their respective restrictions. Here, we demon-strate the application of synchrotron-based X-ray fluorescence imaging (XFI) on prostate tumor cells, which have internalized differently functionalized gold nanopa...
Article
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Recent clinical trials in breast and prostate cancer have established that fewer, larger daily doses (fractions) of radiotherapy are safe and effective, but these do not represent personalised dosing on a patient-by-patient basis. Understanding cell and molecular mechanisms determining fraction size sensitivity is essential to fully exploit this th...
Article
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Aneuploidy is a consequence of chromosomal instability (CIN) that affects prognosis. Gene expression levels associated with aneuploidy provide insight into the molecular mechanisms underlying CIN. Based on the gene signature whose expression was consistent with functional aneuploidy, the CIN70 score was established. We observed an association of CI...
Article
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X-ray-based analytics are routinely applied in many fields, including physics, chemistry, materials science, and engineering. The full potential of such techniques in the life sciences and medicine, however, has not yet been fully exploited. We highlight current and upcoming advances in this direction. We describe different X-ray-based methodologie...
Article
Analysis and quantification of residual, unrepaired DNA double-strand breaks by detecting damage-associated γH2AX or 53BP1 foci is a promising approach to evaluate radiosensitivity or radiosensitization in tumor cells. Manual foci quantification by eye is well-established but unsatisfactory due to inconsistent foci numbers between different observe...
Article
DNA replication stress is a major source of DNA damage, including double-stranded breaks that promote DNA damage response (DDR) signaling. Inefficient repair of such lesions can affect genome integrity. During DNA replication different factors act on chromatin remodeling in a coordinated way. While recent studies have highlighted individual molecul...
Article
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Simple Summary: The poor prognosis of patients with TNBC have fostered a major effort to identify more patients who would benefit from targeted therapies. Here we recognize PTEN as a potential CIN-causing gene in TNBC and consider PTEN-deficient TNBC for the treatment with PARP1 inhibitors due to the protective role of PTEN during DNA replication....
Article
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Following recent developments, the RENEB network (Running the European Network of biological dosimetry and physical retrospective dosimetry) is in an excellent position to carry out large scale molecular epidemiological studies of ionizing radiation effects, with validated expertise in the dicentric, fluorescent in situ hybridization (FISH)-translo...
Article
Trifluridine/tipiracil (FTD/TPI; marketed as Lonsurf®) has shown clinically relevant activity after fluoropyrimidine failure in colorectal cancer and may thus be of increased efficacy compared with current standard capecitabine chemoradiation. Here we investigated the colorectal cancer cell lines HT29, HCT116, SW48 and Caco-2 to provide a preclinic...
Article
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(1) Background: The combination of the first-generation antiandrogens and radiotherapy (RT) has been studied extensively in the clinical setting of prostate cancer (PCa). Here, we evaluated the potential radiosensitizing effect of the second-generation antiandrogens abiraterone acetate, apalutamide and enzalutamide. (2) Methods: Cell proliferation...
Article
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Here, we present a modified in vitro end-joining (EJ) assay to quantify EJ capacity, accuracy as well as pathway switch to alternative end-joining (Alt-EJ) or single strand annealing (SSA). A novel transformation assay was established to specifically measure circular repair products, which correlate with classical EJ efficiency. The EJ assay was va...
Article
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Chemoradiation, either alone or in combination with surgery or induction chemotherapy, is the current standard of care for most locally advanced solid tumors. Though chemoradiation is usually performed at the maximum tolerated doses of both chemotherapy and radiation, current cure rates are not satisfactory for many tumor entities, since tumor hete...
Preprint
Full-text available
This is the preprint of a manuscript that has now been accepted for publication in Cancer Letters. The peer-reviewed final version is available on: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.canlet.2020.08.038. You are welcome to request a private copy if you do not have full text access to this journal.
Article
Molecular-targeted therapies and treatment stratification based on molecular biomarkers have rapidly gained momentum in the therapeutic spectrum for patients with prostate cancer, particularly those with aggressive disease. DNA damage repair (DDR) pathways are commonly impaired in prostate cancer. Recent studies have detailed mechanisms interconnec...
Article
Full-text available
The oncogene epidermal growth factor receptor variant III (EGFRvIII) is frequently expressed in glioblastomas (GBM) but its impact on therapy response is still under controversial debate. Here we wanted to test if EGFRvIII influences the sensitivity towards the alkylating agent temozolomide (TMZ). Therefore, we retrospectively analyzed the survival...
Article
Findings from previous studies have suggested that the telomerase system is involved in radiation-induced genomic instability. In this study, we investigated the involvement of telomerase in the development and processing of chromosomal damage at different cell cycle stages after irradiation of human fibroblasts. Several response criteria were inve...
Article
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Chromosomal instability not only has a negative effect on survival in triple-negative breast cancer, but also on the well treatable subgroup of luminal A tumors. This suggests a general mechanism independent of subtypes. Increased chromosomal instability (CIN) in triple-negative breast cancer (TNBC) is attributed to a defect in the DNA repair pathw...
Article
MGMT promoter methylation is the only accepted biomarker with prognostic role in GBM but its routine implementation is limited partly response to TMZ is heterogeneous, but also due to lack of effective alternative treatment options. Therefore, additional biomarkers are needed to enable better prediction of survival and to improve individualized tre...
Article
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Overexpression of the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR) in head and neck squamous cell carcinomas (HNSCC) is considered to cause increased EGFR activity, which adds to tumorigenicity and therapy resistance. Since it is still unclear, whether EGFR expression is indeed associated with increased activity in HNSCC, we analyzed the relationship be...
Article
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Ectoine is a natural protectant expressed by halophile bacteria to resist challenges of their natural environments, such as drought, heat or high salt concentrations. As a compatible solute, ectoine does not interfere with the cell’s metabolism even at high molar concentrations. External application of ectoine results in surface hydration and membr...
Article
Background The multi‐kinase inhibitor sorafenib displays antitumoral effects in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC); however, the targeted kinases are unknown. Here we aimed to identify those kinases to determine the mechanism of sorafenib‐mediated effects and establish candidate biomarkers for patient stratification. Methods The effects...
Article
Here, we present a functional assay to detect the repair switch to the alternative PARP1‐dependent end joining (PARP1‐EJ) pathway and the associated susceptibility to PARPi‐mediated radiosensitization in freshly collected tumor samples from prostate cancer (PCa) patients, thereby facilitating the selection of patients who should benefit from combin...
Article
Full-text available
This review summarises our current understanding of the radiation-induced bystander/systemic effect (RIBE) as well as other types of intercellular reactions induced by malignant tumours, chemotherapy, photodynamic stress and the microbiome. On the basis of striking similarities between these different types of responses RIBE is proposed as a protot...