Summer School IC TheraNova 2022

Successful first round of the TheraNova Summer School

The first Summer School of the Innovation Center Innovative Therapeutics (TheraNova) took place October 13 to October 14, 2022 at the Erbacher Hof in Mainz. Project updates were given by participating PhD students and clinician scientists from Johann Wolfgang Goethe University and the Fraunhofer Institutes ITMP and IGD, and invited speakers highlighted current developments in the fields of innovative therapeutics and personalized medicine.

Dr. Mustafa Diken, Deputy Director Immunotherapy Development Center at Translational Oncology Institute (TRON) as well as Vice President Vaccines & Immunology at BioNTech SE, gave an overview on mRNA-based therapeutics focussing on BioNTech’s platform for mRNA-based approaches for the prevention of viral infections as well as in cancer therapy.

Prof. Dr. Michael Parnham, emeritus Professor of Pharmacology and Toxicology at Goethe University Frankfurt, Senior Adviser and co-founder of Phialogics GmbH, elaborated on the history of drug development in the last century.

Prof. Dr. Thomas Thum, Head of the Fraunhofer Institute for Toxicology and Experimental Medicine (ITEM) in Hannover, professor at Hannover Medical School and founder of Cardior Pharmaceuticals GmbH, highlighted recent advances in the functional characterisation and subsequent therapeutic exploitation of non-coding RNAs for the treatment of heart failure and other cardiovascular diseases.

Prof. Dr. Krishnaraj Rajalingam, Head of the Cell Biology Unit at the University Medical Center Mainz and co-founder of KHR Biotec GmbH, presented recent advances in the development of small molecule inhibitors of the RAS-MAPK-pathway and he shared his experience in the development of personalised therapeutic approaches for cancer patients.

Prof. Dr. Marcus Metz, professor for dermatology at the Institute for Allergy Research at the Charité Berlin and at the Fraunhofer Institute for Translational Medicine and Pharmacology (ITMP) gave valuable insights into the constant refinement process of bench-to-bedsite-to-bench transitions in the treatment of the dermatological disorder urticaria.

We thank all participating members of the Innovation Center TheraNova for their contributions during the event and especially thank the invited speakers for their valuable and informative insights into current developments in personalized therapies and entrepreneurship.