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Molecular Biology of Cancer

Research Department

Group photo of the Department of the Molecular Biology of Cancer team

The department is focused on research into the molecular characteristics of cancer, especially of the colon and rectum. Within these studies we focus on the molecular epidemiological level in order to identify biomarkers of increased predisposition to tumor diseases, enable early diagnostics, assess individual responses to anti‑tumor treatment, and determine the long-term prognosis. The department has been working with different types of biological material from patients with cancer diseases, such as solid tissue, blood cells, plasma and stool.

Pavel Vodička

Head of the Department
Res. Prof. Pavel Vodička, M.D.

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Deputy Head

Veronika Vymetálková, Ph.D.

Research Scientists

Klára Červená, Ph.D.

Josef Horák, M.D., Ph.D.

Michal Kroupa, Ph.D.

Alessio Naccarati, Ph.D.

Nazila Navvabi, Ph.D.

Soňa Vodenková, Ph.D.

Res. Prof. Pavel Vodička, M.D.

Ludmila Vodičková, M.D., Ph.D.

Veronika Vymetálková, Ph.D.

Ph.D. Students

Safa Andarawi, M.Sc., MMedEd

Kateřina Balounová, M.Sc.

Saba Selvi, M.Sc.

Kateřina Šašková, M.D.

On maternity leave

Anna Šišková, M.Sc.

Kristýna Tomášová, M.Sc.

Undergraduate Students

Natálie Danešová, B.Sc.

Petr Dostál, B.Sc.


Dominika Dušková

Petr Hanák, Ph.D.

External Collaborator

Markéta Urbanová, Ph.D.

Important results

Mutational analysis of driver genes defines the colorectal adenoma: in situ carcinoma transition

To dissect the genetics in the evolvement of colorectal adenomas into colorectal carcinomas (CRC) we have analyzed the mutation spectrum of genes involved in CRC (APC, BRAF, EGFR, NRAS, KRAS, PIK3CA, POLE, POLD1, SMAD4, PTEN, TP53) in 96 adenomas and in situ carcinomas by a high-throughput genotyping technique. We found a high frequency of pathogenic variants in these genes. The APC, KRAS and TP53 mutation frequencies were lower in adenomas than in in situ carcinoma samples. The frequency distribution of mutations was as follows: low-grade adenomas-high-grade adenomas-in situ carcinoma: APC gene 42.9-56.0-54.5%; KRAS gene 32.7-32.0-45.5%; TP53 gene 8.2-20.0-18.2%. KRAS mutations occurred mainly in villous histology, APC promoter methylation associated with POLE genetic variations. There is a multistep model of gradual accumulation of mutations in the driver genes.

The distribution of genetic alterations detected in low-grade, high-grade adenomas, and in situ carcinomas. Each row represents a patient, and each column represents a gene. Different mutation types are indicated by different colors. The bar chart on the top shows the total number of the given gene’s mutations observed in the sample.



Jungwirth, J., Urbanová, M., Boot, A., Hošek, P., Bendová, P., Šišková, A., Švec, J., Kment, M., Tůmová, D., Summerová, S., Beneš, Z., Buchler, T., Kohout, P., Hucl, T., Matěj, R., Vodičková, L., van Wezel, T., Vodička, P., Vymetálková, V.: (2022) Mutational analysis of driver genes defines the colorectal adenoma: in situ carcinoma transition. Scientific Reports. 12(1): 2570. doi: 10.1038/s41598-022-06498-9.