Seminar 7: November 10th

On November 10th, from 16:00 – 17:15, our keynote speaker will be Prof. Dr. Sarah-Maria Fendt of the KU Leuven in Belgium. She will be joined by Marjolein Kes of the Princess Maxima Center and Utrecht University.

Prof. Dr. Sarah-Maria Fendt (KU Leuven)

“Metabolic rewiring driving metastasis formation”

Sarah-Maria Fendt is a Principal Investigator at the VIB Center for Cancer Biology and Professor of Oncology at KU Leuven, Belgium. Sarah has a Master degree of Science in Biochemistry from TU Munich and a PhD in Molecular Systems Biology from the ETH Zurich. Sarah worked as postdoctoral fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), before starting her independent research program in 2013. Sarah’s lab is specifically interested in elucidating general regulatory principles in metabolism, and understanding cancer metabolism during metastasis formation as well as during altered nutrient availability. To perform novel research in her fields of interest her group exploits their expertise in metabolomics and fluxomics. The research of Sarah’s lab is currently funded by multiple (inter)national grants and industry, which include an ERC consolidator grant.  In 2020 Sarah has been awarded with the highly prestigious EMBO Gold Medal and a Baillet Latour Grant for Medical Research.

Marjolein Kes (Princess Maxima Center / Utrecht University)

“Finding the Metabolic Achilles Heel of Pediatric Rhabdoid Tumors: Therapeutic Targeting of Aberrant Nucleotide Synthesis”

My name is Marjolein Kes, and I am currently a first year, shared PhD student in the research groups of Jarno Drost (Princess Maxima Center for Pediatric Oncology) and Celia Berkers (Utrecht University). During my PhD, I will try to unravel metabolic vulnerabilities in rhabdoid childhood tumors, focusing on malignant rhabdoid tumors found in the kidney (MRTK) and brains (AT/RT) of young children. By combining the spheroid/organoid expertise of the Drost group with the metabolic expertise of the Berkers group, I hope to contribute to the survival and quality of life of children suffering from this now often incurable disease.