Research team

Univ.-Prof. Dr. med. Nikolas H. Stoecklein
Telf. +49 (0)211 81 04109
Public Profiles: List of Publications (PubMed), Linkedin 

My major research interests are minimal residual disease and early systemic disease in cancer. A current focus of my group is to improve CTC-based liquid biopsies. As such, we pioneered Diagnostic Leukapheresis (DLA) for enhanced CTC detection and established workflows to parse CTCs comprehensively at the single cell level. Hereby, we hope to get deeper insight into the biology of systemic progression and therapeutic resistance. Prior joining the HHU, I obtained post-doctoral training at the Institute of Immunology of the Ludwig- Maximilians-University Munich, Germany, in the group of Christoph Klein. I graduated from the University of Hamburg, Germany, in 1998 where I studied medicine.

Scientific staff

Dr. rer. nat. Rui P. L. Neves
Telf. +49 (0)211 81 06012
Public Profiles: List of Publications (PubMed), Linkedin

I graduated Biochemistry in 2003 (Uni. Coimbra, Portugal) and completed my Ph.D. in 2008 (Uni. Düsseldorf, Germany).  My research has been focused in the optimization of methods and workflows to interrogate the heterogeneity of tumours and circulating tumour cells in order to explore its relevance for disease progression and therapy resistance.


Christiane Driemel

Telf. +49 (0)211 81 04580

I graduated in Biology in 2000 (Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf, Germany) and have an interest in CTCs and diagnostic leukapharesis (DLA). I am responsible for CellSearch analyses of blood and DLA samples and coordinate the sample registry and sample logistics. Further, I have responsibilities as laboratory manager.

Yihan Ma

Telf. +49 (0)211 81 06022

In my master thesis, completed in Xiamen University (China), I have analysed circulating cell-free miRNA in patients with non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) and explored differences associated with EGFR mutational status. Now, I am focused on the analysis of DNA methylation in CTCs and I aim to understand its contribution to gene expression and metastases.

Monica Sudarsanam

I graduated Life Science Informatics from University of Bonn, Germany in 2018 and currently working on my Ph.D. My PhD projects are about concerning the genomic analysis of Single circulating tumor cells (CTCs) by constructing their sub-clonal architectures to get deeper insights into the biology of systemic progression, tumor evolution and therapeutic resistance in different types of cancers. I am also interested in designing workflows to optimize processing, extraction and analysis of mutational data from CTCs with extremely low sequence coverage.

Julia Oles

I graduated with a master‘s degree in molecular biomedicine from the Heinrich-Heine-University in Düsseldorf in 2023. I am currently doing my PhD with a focus on the isolation of circulating tumor cells (CTCs) via diagnostic leukapheresis (DLA). My Project comprises of the optimization of the DLA, especially for metastatic breast cancer patients, to improve CTC yields. Further, I am interested in investigating the density-linked biology of CTCs.

Andrés Garisoain Zafra

I graduated in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology (BSc) in 2017 (Rovira and Virgili’s University, Spain) and in Biomedicine (MSc) in 2018 (University of Barcelona, Spain). I have a strong background in wet and dry laboratories. Currently, I am a Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellow in the EU-funded ColoMARK project and I am developing my PhD studies working in characterization of biomarkers from liquid biopsies in colorectal cancer.

Dennis Roth (AG Flügen)

Telf. +49 (0)211 81 04502

I graduated in Biology in 2019 at the University Duisburg – Essen in Essen. In 2020 I started my Ph.D. with the project Estrogen receptor beta and Dormancy of hepatic disseminated tumor cells in colorectal cancer using in-vitro cell line models an in-vivo the chorioallantoic membrane (CAM) model.

MSc- and BSc-Students

Anne Rohloff (MSc student)

Kevin Piratheepanan (Msc student)

Medical Students

Esther Weinstein

Sami El Shami

Tristan Bergmann

Julia Geheb (AG Flügen)

Technical Assistants

Maria Wecker
Telf. +49 (0)211 81 16886

Chief technichian. Animal models. Cell biology assays. CTC detection. Laboratory organization and safety.

Swetlana Seidschner
Telf. +49 (0)211 81 16886

CTC and DTC detection and analysis.

Elisabeth Moog (AG Flügen)

Telf. +49 (0)211 81 06020

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