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At HI-TRON Mainz the German Cancer Research Center (DKFZ) cooperates with the Johannes Gutenberg-University (JGU), the University Medical Center Mainz (UMC) and the non-profit TRON gGmbH (TRON) to deliver personalized immunotherapies against cancer.  Helmholtz Institutes are cooperations between a Helmholtz Center and a university. In HI-TRON Mainz, we are proud that DKFZ cooperates with three university partners in Mainz.

Formally, HI-TRON Mainz is a foundation under public law without legal capacity with the DKFZ as the foundation trustee. HI-TRON Mainz is financed by the federal government (90%) and the state of Rhineland-Palatinate (10%).

HI-TRON Mainz has three standing committees: a Board of Trustees, a Steering Committee (SC) and a Scientific Management Board (SMB). Besides, HI-TRON Mainz has a Scientific Advisory Board (SAB).

Board of Trustees

The Board of Trustees oversees the strategic development of HI-TRON Mainz.

Chair: Dr. Barbara Ohnesorge (Federal Ministry of Education and Research)
Simone von Stockhausen-Taufenbach (Ministry of Science and Health Rhineland-Palatinate)

Steering Committee

The Steering Committee sets the strategic direction of HI-TRON Mainz and reports twice a year to the Board of Trustees on administrative and scientific developments at the Institute.

Chair: Prof. Dr. Michael Baumann (DKFZ)
Prof. Dr. Hansjörg Schild (University Medical Center Mainz)
Prof. Dr. Dirk Jäger (DKFZ)
Prof. Dr. Georg Krausch (Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz)
Dr. Andrée Rothermel (TRON gGmbH)
Ursula Weyrich (DKFZ)

Scientific Management Board

The Scientific Management Board leads the local businesses regarding the scientific and strategic development, supported by the administrative and scientific coordination team, and reports four times a year to the steering commitee. It consists of representatives of the partner institutions and HI-TRON Mainz

Picture of Ugur Sahin Biontech SE, 2021

Prof. Dr. Ugur Sahin

Picture of Özlem Türeci Biontech SE, 2021

Prof. Dr. Özlem Türeci

Picture of Niels Halama J.Arlt

PD Dr. Niels Halama


Picture of Michael Platten J.Arlt

Prof. Dr. Michael Platten

Picture of Julia Neuhaus D. Kafka

Dr. Julia Neuhaus

Picture of Stefan Tenzer DKFZ

Prof. Dr. Stefan Tenzer

Vice chair

Scientific Advisory Board

The Scientific Advisory Board advises the Scientific Management Board up to twice a year.

Prof. Dr. Ivan Dikic (Goethe University Frankfurt)
Prof. Dr. Olivera Finn (University of Pittsburgh)
Prof. Dr. Claudia Lengerke (University Medical Center Tübingen) 
Prof. Dr. Johanna Olweus (Oslo University Hospital)
Prof. Dr. Cornelis J.M. Melief (Prof. Emeritus Leiden University Medical Center and ISA Pharmaceuticals’)
Prof. Dr. Maria Sibilia (Medical University Vienna)
Prof. Dr. James Spicer (Kings College London)

The five DKFZ main research programs

- Cell and Tumor Biology
- Functional and Structural Genomics
- Cancer Risk Factors and Prevention
- Immunology, Infection and Cancer
- Imaging and Radiooncology

HI-TRON Mainz is part of the research program D: Immunology, Infection and Cancer

The immune system is the body's most powerful weapon to fight pathogens and cancer cells. However, pathogens and tumor cells use numerous tricks to evade the immune defense. The Divisions and Research Groups of the Tumor Immunology Program investigate the crucial mechanisms behind the function and behavior of the immune cells of the innate and adaptive immune system as well as the interaction with their microenvironment in the healthy body and in diseases. The fundamental principles behind the development, activation, regulation, differentiation and death of immune cells as well as the molecular mechanisms behind the diversification and plasticity of the immune system are complex. The understanding of these principles is essential for the development of targeted strategies to influence the immune system in the fight against cancer, autoimmune and infectious diseases as well as for the promotion and design of new therapeutic approaches. To answer their respective research questions, the individual groupa develop and use sophisticated experimental model systems and technologies such as genetic barcoding, structural biology techniques and methods as well as platforms for high-throughput analyses at the single-cell level.