Prof. Dr. Frank Buchholz
Prof. Dr. Frank Buchholz has been engaged as full Professor for Medical Systems Biology and Head of Translational Research at the University Cancer Center (UCC) of the Technische Universität Dresden since 2010.
As PhD student at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) in Heidelberg, he performed seminal work to implement and improve site-specific recombinases for genome engineering. During his postdoctoral time at the University of California San Francisco (UCSF), he showed for the first time that these enzymes can induce a predefined chromosomal translocation in vivo and he invented substrate-linked directed evolution to breed recombinases with novel specificities.
He perfectionated this approach as independent group leader at the Max Planck Institute of Molecular Cell Biology and Genetics in Dresden (MPI-CBG) from 2002 until 2010 to develop Tre recombinase, an enzyme that can eradicate HIV from infected cells. This approach has now been developed into a designer-recombinase platform technology and is supported by a number of research grants.
Professor Buchholz is also widely known for his development of esiRNA technology and its implementation as an efficient and specific RNAi screening tool. Employing this tool, he and his group have discovered many new genes relevant for stem cell biology and human diseases. His group has recently extended functional profiling via RNAi and CRISPR/Cas9 technology to primary cells, with the goal to apply this technology to personalized medicine.