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Translational Lung Research Center Heidelberg

Thomas R. Muley, Ph.D.

Head of Biobank and Tumor Documentation at the Thoraxklinik Heidelberg

Group leader and assistant manager of the Translational Research Unit

Co-Coordinator and -Speaker of the DZL Biobank Platform


Translational Research Unit

Thoraxklinik at Heidelberg University Hospital
Röntgenstraße 1

69126 Heidelberg


Phone:+49 (0)6221 396-1110

Fax: +49 (0)6221 396-1652

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homepage: Opens external link in new windowwww.thoraxklinik-heidelberg.de

Research Interests

  • Biomarkers in lung diseases
  • Prognostic and predictive factors in thoracic malignancies

Short CV

1979-1986Study of Biology at Heidelberg University, Germany
1990 Dissertation (Ph.D.) at the Dept. of Pharmacology, Heidelberg University
1990-1993  Postdoctoral Fellow, Dept. of Clinical Chemistry and Bacteriology, Thoraxklinik Heidelberg
1993-1995Senior Research Scientist and Laboratory Manager, Dept. of Clinical Chemistry, Thoraxklinik Heidelberg 
Since 1995Senior Research Scientist, Dept. of Thoracic Surgery, Thoraxklinik Heidelberg       
Since 2000    Head of Biobank, Thoraxklinik Heidelberg       
Since 2005  Group leader and assistant manager, Translational Research Unit (STF), Thoraxklinik Heidelberg
Since 2009 Head of Tumor Documentation, Thoraxklinik Heidelberg           
Since 2011Co-Coordinator and -Speaker of the DZL Biobank Platform


My research focuses on the identification of novel biomarkers and the clinical evaluation of known biomarkers for diagnosis, prognosis and therapy prediction in thoracic malignancies such as lung cancer and pleural mesothelioma. The main resource for this work is the biobank of the Translational Research Unit (STF) at the Thoraxklinik, Heidelberg. The biomaterials (tissue and blood samples) harvested in the course of routine interventions and approved for use in research projects provide for the increasing need for well characterized samples for translational research. To this end the STF collaborates with a number of local (DKFZ, EMBL, NCT), national (DZL, DKTK) and international (CANCERALIA, European Microarray Consortium, NCI) partners.  For example, the main objective of the CANCERALIA Project is to study the role of the lipogenic pathway and Rho GTPases in lung and pancreatic cancer within a European Consortium.  The focus of the LungSys Consortium is a systems biology approach to improve our knowledge and treatment options for lung cancer. The joint project with the National Centre for Tumor diseases (NCT) focuses on identifying the molecular mechanisms of early metastatic spread. In addition, the Thoraxklinik biobank contributes materials for the molecular characterization of lung cancer and mesothelioma as part of “The Cancer Genome Atlas” (TCGA –NCI project).


Post-doctoral fellows

Dr. Marc Schneider, Ph.D.

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Study Nurse

Andrea Bopp

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Ingrid Heinzmann-Groth

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Reha Idikut

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Christa Stolp

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Selected Publications

  1. The Cancer Genome Atlas Research Network. Opens external link in new windowComprehensive genomic characterization of squamous cell lung cancers. Nature. 2012, 489: 521- 525 
  2. Scherf DB, Sarkisyan N, Jacobsson H, Claus R, Bermejo JL, Peil B, Gu L, Muley T, Meister M, Dienemann H, Plass C, Risch A.Opens external link in new window Epigenetic screen identifies genotype-specific promoter DNA methylation and oncogenic potential of CHRNB4. Oncogene. 2012 Sep 3. doi: 10.1038/onc.2012.344. [Epub ahead of print]
  3. Peifer M, Fernández-Cuesta L, Sos ML, George J, Seidel D, Kasper LH, Plenker D, Leenders F, Sun R, Zander T, Menon R, Koker M, Dahmen I, Müller C, Di Cerbo V, Schildhaus HU, Altmüller J, Baessmann I, Becker C, de Wilde B, Vandesompele J, Böhm D, Ansén S, Gabler F, Wilkening I, Heynck S, Heuckmann JM, Lu X, Carter SL, Cibulskis K, Banerji S, Getz G, Park KS, Rauh D, Grütter C, Fischer M, Pasqualucci L, Wright G, Wainer Z, Russell P, Petersen I, Chen Y, Stoelben E, Ludwig C, Schnabel P, Hoffmann H, Muley T, Brockmann M, Engel-Riedel W, Muscarella LA, Fazio VM, Groen H, Timens W, Sietsma H, Thunnissen E, Smit E, Heideman DA, Snijders PJ, Cappuzzo F, Ligorio C, Damiani S, Field J, Solberg S, Brustugun OT, Lund-Iversen M, Sänger J, Clement JH, Soltermann A, Moch H, Weder W, Solomon B, Soria JC, Validire P, Besse B, Brambilla E, Brambilla C, Lantuejoul S, Lorimier P, Schneider PM, Hallek M, Pao W, Meyerson M, Sage J, Shendure J, Schneider R, Büttner R, Wolf J, Nürnberg P, Perner S, Heukamp LC, Brindle PK, Haas S, Thomas RK.Opens external link in new window Opens external link in new windowIntegrative genome analyses identify key somatic driver mutations of small-cell lung cancer. Nat Genet. 2012 Sep 2. doi: 10.1038/ng.2396. [Epub ahead of print]
  4. Timofeeva MN, Hung RJ, Rafnar T, Christiani DC, Field JK, Bickeböller H, Risch A, McKay JD, Wang Y, Dai J, Gaborieau V, McLaughlin J, Brenner D, Narod SA, Caporaso NE, Albanes D, Thun M, Eisen T, Wichmann HE, Rosenberger A, Han Y, Chen W, Zhu D, Spitz M, Wu X, Pande M, Zhao Y, Zaridze D, Szeszenia-Dabrowska N, Lissowska J, Rudnai P, Fabianova E, Mates D, Bencko V, Foretova L, Janout V, Krokan HE, Gabrielsen ME, Skorpen F, Vatten L, Njølstad I, Chen C, Goodman G, Lathrop M, Benhamou S, Vooder T, Välk K, Nelis M, Metspalu A, Raji O, Chen Y, Gosney J, Liloglou T, Muley T, Dienemann H, Thorleifsson G, Shen H, Stefansson K, Brennan P, Amos CI, Houlston R, Landi MT; for TRICL Research Team. Influence of Common Genetic Variation on Lung Cancer Risk: Meta-Analysis of 14,900 Cases and 29,485 Controls.  Hum Mol Genet. 2012 Nov 15;21(22):4980-95.
  5. Warth A, Muley T, Herpel E, Meister M, Herth FJ, Schirmacher P, Weichert W, Hoffmann H, Schnabel PA. Opens external link in new windowLarge-scale comparative analyses of immunomarkers for diagnostic subtyping of non-small-cell lung cancer biopsies. Histopathology. 2012 May 31. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2559.2012.04308.x. [Epub ahead of print]
  6. Lederlin M, Puderbach M, Muley T, Schnabel PA, Stenzinger A, Kauczor HU, Heussel CP, Herth FJ, Hoffmann H, Dienemann H, Weichert W, Warth A. Opens external link in new windowCorrelation of radio- and histomorphological pattern of pulmonary adenocarcinoma. Eur Respir J. 2012 Jul 26. [Epub ahead of print]
  7. Hartz SM, Short SE, Saccone NL, Culverhouse R, Chen L, Schwantes-An TH, Coon H, Han Y, Stephens SH, Sun J, Chen X, Ducci F, Dueker N, Franceschini N, Frank J, Geller F, Gubjartsson D, Hansel NN, Jiang C, Keskitalo-Vuokko K, Liu Z, Lyytikäinen LP, Michel M, Rawal R, Rosenberger A, Scheet P, Shaffer JR, Teumer A, Thompson JR, Vink JM, Vogelzangs N, Wenzlaff AS, Wheeler W, Xiao X, Yang BZ, Aggen SH, Balmforth AJ, Baumeister SE, Beaty T, Bennett S, Bergen AW, Boyd HA, Broms U, Campbell H, Chatterjee N, Chen J, Cheng YC, Cichon S, Couper D, Cucca F, Dick DM, Foroud T, Furberg H, Giegling I, Gu F, Hall AS, Hällfors J, Han S, Hartmann AM, Hayward C, Heikkilä K, Hewitt JK, Hottenga JJ, Jensen MK, Jousilahti P, Kaakinen M, Kittner SJ, Konte B, Korhonen T, Landi MT, Laatikainen T, Leppert M, Levy SM, Mathias RA, McNeil DW, Medland SE, Montgomery GW, Muley T, Murray T, Nauck M, North K, Pergadia M, Polasek O, Ramos EM, Ripatti S, Risch A, Ruczinski I, Rudan I, Salomaa V, Schlessinger D, Styrkársdóttir U, Terracciano A, Uda M, Willemsen G, Wu X, Abecasis G, Barnes K, Bickeböller H, Boerwinkle E, Boomsma DI, Caporaso N, Duan J, Edenberg HJ, Francks C, Gejman PV, Gelernter J, Grabe HJ, Hops H, Jarvelin MR, Viikari J, Kähönen M, Kendler KS, Lehtimäki T, Levinson DF, Marazita ML, Marchini J, Melbye M, Mitchell BD, Murray JC, Nöthen MM, Penninx BW, Raitakari O, Rietschel M, Rujescu D, Samani NJ, Sanders AR, Schwartz AG, Shete S, Shi J, Spitz M, Stefansson K, Swan GE, Thorgeirsson T, Völzke H, Wei Q, Wichmann HE, Amos CI, Breslau N, Cannon DS, Ehringer M, Grucza R, Hatsukami D, Heath A, Johnson EO, Kaprio J, Madden P, Martin NG, Stevens VL, Stitzel JA, Weiss RB, Kraft P, Bierut LJ. Opens external link in new windowIncreased Genetic Vulnerability to Smoking at CHRNA5 in Early-Onset Smokers. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2012 Aug 1;69(8):854-60.
  8. Kahn N, Meister M, Eberhardt R, Muley T, Schnabel PA, Bender C, Johannes M, Keitel D, Sültmann H, Herth FJ, Kuner R. Opens external link in new windowEarly detection of lung cancer by molecular markers in endobronchial epithelial-lining fluid.  J Thorac Oncol. 2012 Jun;7(6):1001-8
  9. Gottschling S, Herpel E, Eberhardt WE, Heigener DF, Fischer JR, Köhne CH, Kortsik C, Kuhnt T, Muley T, Meister M, Bischoff HG, Klein P, Moldenhauer I, Schnabel PA, Thomas M, Penzel R.  Opens external link in new windowThe gefitinib long-term responder (LTR)-A cancer stem-like cell story? Insights from molecular analyses of German long-term responders treated in the IRESSA expanded access program (EAP). Lung Cancer. 2012, 77(1):183-91.
  10. Warth A, Muley T,  Meister M, Stenzinger A, Thomas M, Schirmacher P, Schnabel PA, Budczies J, Hoffmann H, Weichert W.: Back to the Roots: The Novel Histologic IASLC/ATS/ERS Classification System of Invasive Pulmonary Adenocarcinoma is a Stage-Independent Predictor of Survival. J Clin Oncol. 2012 Mar 5. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 22393100
  11. Hollevoet K, Reitsma JB, Creaney J, Grigoriu BD, Robinson BW, Scherpereel A, Cristaudo A, Pass HI, Nackaerts K, Rodríguez Portal JA, Schneider J, Muley T, Di Serio F, Baas P, Tomasetti M, Rai AJ, van Meerbeeck JP. Opens external link in new windowSerum Mesothelin for Diagnosing Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma: An Individual Patient Data Meta-Analysis. J Clin Oncol. 2012 Mar 12. PMID: 22412141
  12. Gottschling S, Jauch A, Kuner R, Herpel E, Mueller-Decker K, Schnabel PA, Xu EC, Muley T, Sültmann H, Bender C, Granzow M, Efferth T, Hoffmann H, Dienemann H, Herth FJ, Meister M. Establishment and comparative characterization of novel squamous cell non-small cell lung cancer cell lines and their corresponding tumor tissue. Lung Cancer. 2012 ;75(1):45-57 
  13. Muley T, Herth FJF, Schnabel P, Dienemann H, Meister M. From tissue to molecular phenotyping: Pre-analytical requirements Heidelberg Experience. Transl Lung Cancer Res 2012;1(2):111-121
  14. Muley T, Kurz M Männle C, Alekozai A, Winteroll S, Dienemann H, Schmidt W, Pfannschmidt J:  Comparison of Serum Cardiac Specific Biomarker Release after Non-Cardiac Thoracic Surgery.  Clin Lab 2011; 57:925-932
  15. Almasi CE, Christensen IJ, Høyer-Hansen G, Danø K, Pappot H, Dienemann H, Muley T. Urokinase receptor forms in serum from non-small cell lung cancer patients: Relation to prognosis. Lung Cancer 2011, 74(3):510-515
  16. Opens external link in new windowHerpel, E., Muley, T. , Schneider, T. , Palm, E. , Kieslich De Hol, D., Warth, A , Meister, M., Storz, K., Schnabel, P.A. , Schirmacher, P. , Dienemann, H. , Hoffmann, H.Opens external link in new window A pragmatic approach to the diagnosis of nodal micrometastases in early stage non-small cell lung cancer.  J Thoracic Oncol 5: 1206-1212, 2010   
  17. Jarius S, Warth A, Wandinger KP, Schnabel PA, Hoffmann H, Wildemann B, Muley T. Antibodies to aquaporin-4 in non-small cell lung cancer: a study on 50 patients. Neurol Sci. 2010;31(6):871-2
  18. Warth A*, Muley T*, Herpel E, Pfannschmidt J, Hoffmann H, Dienemann H, Schirmacher P, Schnabel PA. Opens external link in new windowA histochemical approach to the diagnosis of visceral pleural infiltration by non-small cell lung cancer. Pathol Oncol Res. 2010 Mar;16(1):119-23.* equal contribution
  19. Sporn JC, Kustatscher G, Hothorn T, Collado M, Serrano M, Muley T, Schnabel P, Ladurner AG. Histone macroH2A isoforms predict the risk of lung cancer recurrence.  Oncogene  2009; 28(38):3423-3428.
  20. Roepman P, Jassem J, Smit EF, Muley T, Niklinski J, van de Velde T, Witteveen AT, Rzyman W, Floore A, Burgers S, Giaccone G, Meister M, Dienemann H, Skrzypski M, Kozlowski M, Mooi WJ, van Zandwijk N.: An immune response enriched 72-gene prognostic profile for early-stage non-small-cell lung cancer.  Clin Cancer Res. 2009; 15: 284-90
  21. Kuner R *, Muley T *, Meister M, Ruschhaupt M, Buness A,  Xu EC, Schnabel P, Warth A, Poustka A, Sültmann H*, Hoffmann H* Global gene expression analysis reveals specific patterns of cell junctions in non-small cell lung cancer subtypes. Lung Cancer 2009; 63:32-8.* equal contribution
  22. Singer S, Malz M, Herpel E, Warth A, Bissinger M, Keith M, Muley T, Meister M, Hoffmann H, Penzel R, Gdynia G, Ehemann V, Schnabel PA, Kuner R, Huber P, Schirmacher P, Breuhahn K.  Opens external link in new windowCoordinated Expression of Stathmin Family Members by Far Upstream Sequence Element-Binding Protein-1 Increases Motility in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer. Cancer Res 2009; 69:2234-43 
  23. Muley T, Fetz TH, Dienemann H, Hoffmann H, Herth FJF, Meister M, Ebert W.: Tumor volume and tumor marker index based on CYFRA 21-1 and CEA are strong prognostic factors in operated early stage NSCLC. Lung Cancer 2008, 60, 408-415
  24. Rieker RJ*, Muley T*, Klein C, Schnabel PA, Herpel E, Meister M, Schirmacher P, Dienemann H, Pfannschmidt J.  An institutional study on thymomas and thymic carcinomas: experience in 77 patients. Thorac Cardiovasc Surg. 2008, 56(3):143-7. * equal contribution
  25. Opens external link in new windowGallegos Ruiz MI, Floor K, Roepman P, Rodriguez JA, Meijer GA, Mooi WJ, Jassem E, Niklinski J, Muley T, van Zandwijk N, Smit EF, Beebe K, Neckers L, Ylstra B, Giaccone G.Opens external link in new window Integration of gene dosage and gene expression in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer, identification of HSP90 as potential target. PLoS ONE. 2008; 3(3):e0001722
  26. Schneider J, Meister M, Hoffmann H, Dienemann H, Herth FJF, Muley T: Diagnostic and prognostic value of soluble mesothelin-related proteins in patients with malignant pleural mesothelioma in comparison to benign asbestosis and lung cancer. J Thoracic Oncol 2008; 3: 1317-1324
  27. Haase D, Meister M, Muley T, Hess J, Teurich S, Schnabel P, Hartenstein B, Angel P.: FRMD3, a novel putative tumour suppressor in NSCLC. Oncogene 2007; 26(30):4464-4468.
  28. Pfannschmidt J, Muley T, Bulzebruck H, Hoffmann H, Dienemann H.: Prognostic assessment after surgical resection for non-small cell lung cancer: experiences in 2083 patients. Lung Cancer 2007; 55(3):371-377
  29. Muley T, Dienemann H, Ebert W.  CYFRA 21-1 and CEA  are independent prognostic factors in 153 operated stage I NSCLC patients. Anticancer Res 2004; 24: 1953-1956
  30. Muley T, Ebert W, Stieber P, Raith H, Holdenrieder S, Nagel D,  Fürst H, Roth HJ,  Luthe H,  Blijenberg BG, Gurr E, Uhl W, von Pawel J, and  Drings P. Technical Performance and Diagnostic Utility of the New Elecsys®NSE EIA. Clin Chem Lab Med (2003) 41:95-103
  31. Muley T, Dienemann H, Ebert W. (2003) Increased CYFRA 21-1 and CEA levels are negative predictors of outcome in p-stage I NSCLC. Anticancer Res 23 (5B): 4085-4093
  32. Fischer JR, Baas P, Becker HD, Chyczewski L, Dienemann H, Drings P, Ebert W, Herth F, Hoffmann H, Laudanski J, Lahm H, Manegold Ch, Monzo M, Mooi WJ, Muley T, Neuner A, Niklinski J, Niklinska W, Rosell R, Taron M, van't Veer L, Werle B, Zandwijk N. (2002) Report from the first meeting of the 'European Network on Translational Research in Lung Cancer Amsterdam-Barcelona-Bialystok-Heidelberg'. Thoraxklinik Heidelberg, Germany, July 25, 2001. Lung Cancer, 36(2):221-4.
  33. Ebert W, Muley T (1999) Cyfra 21-1 in the follow-up of inoperable non-small cell lung cancer patients treated with chemotherapy. Anticancer Res 19:2669-2672
  34. Ebert W,  Muley T (1998) Analytical performance of the New Single Step COBAS® Core NSE EIA II and its Diagnostic  Utility in Comparison with the established Cobas Core NSE EIA. Clin Lab 44: 871-879
  35. T. Muley, M. Wiebel, V. Schulz, W. Ebert (1994): Elastinolytic activity of alveolar macrophages in smoking-associated pulmonary emphysema. Clin Investig 72:269-276
  36. W. Ebert, B. Leichtweis., B. Schapöhler, Th. Muley (1993) The new tumor marker CYFRA is superior to SCC antigen and CEA in the primary diagnosis of lung Cancer. Tumordiagn Ther 14: 91-99
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