Karin Moelling on Future Oncogene Research
  Karin Moelling     Biography    
Recorded: 06 Jun 2006

I am interested in finding applications for how can you treat people, and the retroviruses is of course the basis for making the gene therapy. We did some preliminary experiments to use a retrovirus called a queuing gene or a therapeutic gene into retrovirus instead of an oncogene. I mean you would just mimic what nature has developed but the other [unintelligible] treat cancer by taking a virus, take out the oncogene put in the therapeutic gene and off you go. But, it is very difficult and many drawbacks come up so right now I’m not pursuing that very much. I think life in the [unintelligible] I think you need to attack cancer from many sides so we are using right now a gene that makes some anti-angiogenesis effect but that’s not an oncogene, so I’m drifting a little out of that area, but I’m still very focused on what can we do against human cancer. So this, in this case, I’m looking at an anti-angiogenesis factor which is an inter-looking factor, but it’s not an oncogene anymore and not virus related.

Karin Moelling currently retired professor, still affiliated with the University of Zurich and the Max-Planck-Institute for Molecular Genetics in Berlin. She studied molecular biology at the University of Berkely, Califonia. She received her PhD at the Max-Planck-Institute for Virology at Tübingen in Germany. She did two post-doctoral research at the Robert Koch Institute in Berlin (1973-1975), and at the Institute of Virology, University Giessen. In 1977 she received her Habilitation at the University of Giessen in Biophysics on "Replication of retroviruses".

From 1976 till 1981 she was the Head of Independent Research Group at Max-Planck-Institute for Molecular Genetics in Berlin, Germany, on oncogenes, proto-oncogenes, cancer and HIV. In 1993 she became the Director of Institute of Medical Virology (IMV) and Full Professor at University of Zurich in Switzerland, she held this position till 2008. Between 2008-2009 she was Fellow of Institute of Advanced Study in Berlin and between 2008-2011 she became a Group Leader, Viruses and Cancer at University of Zurich.

Her research focus on retroviruses and cancer from molecular mechanisms to drug design. She is a Member of the European Molecular Biology Organization. She received several awards e.g. SwissAward in 2007, 4 prices: Czerny Price, Richtzenhain Price, Meyenburg Price and Ansman Price. She was Selected as Heisenberg Fellow in German Science Foundation.