Visit from Zurich

We had the pleasure to host Enni Markkanen as a guest at our institute from 16th to 20th of april. Enni Markkanen is a PI at the Institute of Pharmacology at the Veterinary University of Zurich. She is an expert in the field of DNA repair and breast cancer.

Info [Link 1]

Thank you very much for your interesting talk and for sharing your expertise, Enni! We hope you enjoyed your stay as much as we did.

 [Link 2]





New publication: "NK cell-specific CDK8 deletion enhances antitumor responses"

The paper "NK cell-specific CDK8 deletion enhances antitumor responses" with shared first-authorship of Agnieszka Witalisz-Siepracka and Dagmar Gotthardt has been published in the journal Cancer Immunology Research.

In this publication they show that NK-cell activity is suppressed by cyclin-dependent kinase 8 (Cdk8). Therapies targeting Cdk8 in cancer patients might enhance NK-cell activity against tumor cells.


Link [Link 3]



„Career’s day“ at the AHS Contiweg secondary school in Vienna

On Tuesday 30th of January, Armin Zupan was invited to the secondary school “AHS Contiweg” to present his profession and teach the students about the challenges of being a specialist animal care taker. Armin was part of a group coming from various professions discussing his education and professional experience. It was a great success and a new experience for Armin Zupan.

Thanks Armin - for taking this challenge and doing so well!



Award to Agnes Dadak

Prof. Agnes Dadak and Dr. Alexander Tritthart received the award "Beste Arbeit 2017" for their review "Review der rechtlichen Rahmenbedingungen zum Arzneimitteleinsatz in der Veterinärmedizin in Österreich" of Wiener Tierärztliche Monatsschrift - Veterinary Medicine Austria.




"Preis der Stadt Wien" award to Veronika Sexl

Veronika Sexl was awarded the "Preis der Stadt Wien" in category Medical Sciences for her outstanding life's work. The "Preis der Stadt Wien" is an annual prize in different categories, from architecture to literature and sciences. Awardees are selected by an independent jury.

In this video-message [Link 4] Veronika Sexl explains what being a scientist means to her. (german)

We congratulate her and are very proud to be part of her team!

Link [Link 5]

 [Link 6]


Ursula und Fritz Melchers Award (ÖGAI) to Dagmar Gotthardt

Dagmar Gotthardt was awarded the highly prestigious Ursula und Fitz Melchers Award of the Austrian Society for Immunology and Allergology (ÖGAI) for the best PhD thesis.

Dagmar was part of our institute from 2010 to 2016. Her most important and pioneering work was to identify STAT5 as molecular switch turning Natural Killer (NK) cells into tumor promotors – she was thereby the first one to uncover the dark and tumor promoting side of these cells. Through her PhD thesis Dagmar authored 14 publications - in 4 she served as the first and leading author. This is absolutely unique and outstanding and is accounted to Dagmar's scientific and experimental talents, to her unique ability to analyse, to her never ending energy and fearless way to approach any problem.

It was a pleasure to accompany Dagmar through the last years, to see her grow and develop. Her joy and enthusiasm for science, the critical discussions will for ever stick in my memory. It was a truly outstanding moment to be part of the award ceremony where such a young and gifted scientist received a well-deserved award.

Dagmar – congratulations – you are amazing!

We are so proud,

Veronika and the team

 [Link 7]
 [Link 8]


Daniela Prinz, Ana Puga
 [Link 9]
 [Link 10]

Awards for Daniela Prinz and Ana Puga

"Together one step further" was the theme of the 2nd Joint Symposium of the IAI and MCCA PhD programs held at the Medical University of Vienna (MUW) from 25th to 26th of September.

Two Vetmeduni Vienna PhD students were honoured: Daniela Prinz, Pharmacology, was awarded a prize for best oral student's presentation for her talk "NKG2D: friend or foe in NK cell mediated tumor surveillance" and Ana Puga, Animal Breeding and Genetics was awarded a poster prize for her poster: "The role of STAT1 isoforms in Th cell differentiation and CD4+ T cell-mediated diseases.




 [Link 11]

CeMM 10th year anniversary

We congratulate the faculty of CeMM on their 10th anniversary and wish them a great future!

Anniversary [Link 12]



PhD Defense Eva Grundschober

Eva Grundschober successfully defended her PhD thesis "Jak2 - Stat5 Important players in leukemogenesis"!




Sebastian(e) Kollmann, Barbara Maurer
 [Link 13]

Wien Energie Business-Run

The Institute of Pharmacology participated with two teams at the annual Wien Energie Business-Run, Team Pharmablitz (Vanessa Knab, Daniela Prinz, Alexandra Schoos) and Team VetRoadRunners (Faridi Farnaz, Barbara Maurer).

Due to unfortunate sick leave of one of the participants Sebastian Kollmann helped out and managed to sneak (or rather run) into women's ranking at rank 22 under the alias Faridi Farnaz. Barbara Maurer reached a great rank 50 in the same category.

We congratulate all participants on their performance!

Thanks go to Vetmeduni Vienna for sponsoring the registration fee of our runners!

Link to ranking [Link 14]



 [Link 15]

New article published: p27 in FLT3-driven acute myeloid leukemia: many roads lead to ruin

The article "p27 in FLT3-driven acute myeloid leukemia: many roads lead to ruin" by Iris Z. Uras, Florian Bellutti and Veronika Sexl has been published in August's issue of Haematologica.

Link [Link 16]


28.07.17 - 29.07.17

 [Link 17]

World University Vet Series: Camelid Congress Vienna 2017

The Camelid Congress Vienna 2017 organized by Ass.-Prof. DVetPharm Dr. Agnes M. Dadak and a.o. Univ.Prof. Dr. Sonja Franz took place on the campus of the Vetmeduni Vienna on 28th to 29th of July 2017.

Some impressions from the successful and interesting event on camelid knowledge, research and treatment:

 [Link 18]


Leo Edlinger, Angelika Berger-Bečvař
 [Link 19]

New paper published: Expansion of BCR/ABL1+ cells requires PAK2 but not PAK1

The paper "Expansion of BCR/ABL1+ cells requires PAK2 but not PAK1" by Leo Edlinger, Angelika Berger-Bečvař, et al. has been published in the British Journal of Haematology.

Link [Link 20]



Annual Department 1 "Biomedical Sciences" BBQ

This year's annual Department 1 barbecue took place on 28th of June and was hosted by the Institute of Pharmacology and Toxicology. With up to 90 hungry and thirsty guests in peak hours it was a great success. Our utmost gratitude goes to Renée Pollak for organizing everything and to all the numerous helping hands that made sure that none of the guests had to stay hungry and thirsty.

Thank you all for coming and for enjoying this nice and relaxed evening with us!

 [Link 21] [Link 22] [Link 23] [Link 24] [Link 25] [Link 26]


Iris Uras, Ruth Scheicher
 [Link 27]

New paper published: Cdk6 contributes to cytoskeletal stability in erythroid cells

The paper "Cdk6 contributes to cytoskeletal stability in erythroid cells" by Iris Z Uras, Ruth Scheicher, Veronika Sexl et al. has been published in the journal Haematologica [Link 28], the journal of the European Hematology Association.

Link [Link 29]



 [Link 30]

Brigitte Holnsteiner retired

One of our long term technical assistants Brigitte Holnsteiner went into well earned retirement today.

Brigitte Holnsteiner was at the Institute of Pharmacology and Toxicology for almost 12 years, first as technical assistant of Katrin Staniek and from 2011 until now as technical assistant of Veronika Sexl's team of scientists.

We wish her all the best and a pleasant and relaxed retirement!



 [Link 31]

New article: JAK-STAT in NK cells: the good, the bad and the ugly

The article "JAK-STAT in NK cells: the good, the bad and the ugly [Link 32]" by Dagmar Gotthardt and Veronika Sexl describing the role and contributions of JAK–STAT molecules in NK-cell biology has been published in Frontiers in Immunology [Link 33].



Florian Bellutti selected as speaker at EMBO Meeting "Cell death, inflammation and cancer" in Obergurgl

Florian Bellutti was selected as speaker at the "Cell death, inflammation and cancer" EMBO Meeting [Link 34] in Obergurgl from January 10th to January 14th.

The title of his short talk is "CDK6-p53: A non-canonical function of CDK6 in hematological malignancies" and it will take place on January 13th.



Prototype Research Fund "PRIZE 2016"

The project "Cyclotides in Cancer Therapy" from Christian Gruber, Karoline Kollmann and Dagmar Stoiber-Sakaguchi was granted the research fund "PRIZE 2016" by AWS [Link 35], supported by the Austrian Ministry of Science and Research in the amount of 145.526,98€.

PRIZE rewards new patented or patentable innovations from fundamental research at universities or in cooperation with defined research facilities. A jury selects the most promising projects in the scope of a competition to receive a research fund for creating a prototype. Prerequisite is a demand at small or medium sized companies.



 [Link 36]

Project approval for WTZ India 2017-18

Lars Gille's application for the call WTZ India 2017-18 (Wissenschaftlich Technische Zusammenarbeit/Scientific & Technological Cooperation) [Link 37] was selected for support by the Centre for International Cooperation & Mobility (ICM) of the Austrian Agency for International Cooperation in Education and Research (OeAD-GmbH) [Link 38].




... and a Happy New Year!



Merry Christmas ...



 [Link 39]

PhD defense Florian Bellutti

Florian Bellutti defended his PhD thesis "CDK6 in transformation and drug resistance" with great success, congratulations!

Just in time to celebrate a merry and relaxed Christmas!



 [Link 40]

SFB F47 "Myeloproliferative Neoplasms" prolongued

The funding of SFB F47 Project #06: "Targeting CDK6-regulated growth and transcription in MPN" of Veronika Sexl and Iris Uras has been prolongued for additional 4 years. Project #06 is an important part of the SFB MPN [Link 41] research program.

 [Link 42]

SFB F28 "Jak-Stat - Signalling from Basis to Disease" prolongued

In addition, Veronika Sexl's contribution to the SFB F28 "Jak-Stat - Signalling from Basis to Disease" of Mathias Müller namely "Jak-Stat involvement in leukemogenesis and NK-mediated tumor surveillance" has been granted an additional funding period.

Jak-Stat [Link 43]



 [Link 44]

"Teaching Mobility" attendance Dr. Erzsébet Pásztiné Gere

Dr. Erzsébet Pásztiné Gere from the Veterinary University of Budapest, Hungary stayed at our institute for one week in the context of a CEEPUS lecturer program. She attended lectures and tutorials to share her experience and to gain insight in veterinary education in Austria.

It was a mutually beneficial experience for both sides!

Thank you and good luck!



 [Link 45]

Guest speaker Kaan Boztug

Kaan Boztug (head of LBI for Rare and Undiagnosed Diseases and of CeRUD Vienna; Adjunct PI at CeMM) was here and shared his expertise on the discovery of novel mutations in primary immunodeficiencies with us!

We enjoyed the talk and discussions a lot, thanks again for coming!



Angelika Berger, Andrea Hölbl-Kovacic
 [Link 46]
Dagmar Gotthardt
 [Link 47]

Angelika Berger, Dagmar Gotthardt and Andrea Hölbl-Kovacic receive "Fonds der Stadt Wien für innovative Krebsforschung"-Awards

The Fonds der Stadt Wien für innovative interdisziplinäre Krebsforschung [Link 48] awards Angelika Berger, Dagmar Gotthardt and Andrea Hölbl-Kovacic for their outstanding scientific works on cancer research.

Angelika Berger and Andrea Hölbl-Kovacic were awarded for their publication "PAK-dependent STAT5 serine phosphorylation is required for BCR-ABL-induced leukemogenesis" [Link 49] which was published in Leukemia [Link 50] in December 2013.

Dagmar Gotthardt was awarded for her publication "Loss of STAT3 in murine NK cells enhances NK cell–dependent tumor surveillance" [Link 51] which was published in Blood [Link 52] in March 2014.


Link to press release [Link 53]


23.09.16 (german)

 [Link 54]

Seminar: Neuweltkameliden-Tagung für VeterinärmedizinerInnen

Ass.-Prof. Dr. Agnes Dadak und Ao. Univ.-Prof. Dr. Sonja Franz fungieren als Veranstalterinnen für Tagung und Workshop zum Thema "Neuweltkameliden-Tagung für VeterinärmedizinerInnen - Praktische Aspekte der Neuweltkameliden-Medizin" am 23.09.16.

Informationen und Programm finden Sie unter folgendem Link [Link ].

Wir wünschen einen lehrreichen und interessanten Seminartag!



 [Link 55]

New paper accepted in Oncogene

The paper "MYC selects against reduced BCL2A1/A1 protein expression during B cell lymphomagenesis" of Andreas Villunger, Maja Sochalska, Johannes Weiss, Michaela Prchal-Murphy, Veronika Sexl, and Fabian Schuler has been accepted for publication in Oncogene [Link 56].



 [Link 57]

Annual Pharma-Barbecue at Vetmeduni Vienna

We celebrated our annual barbecue on 20th of July.

This year's highlight: a volleyball tournament.

Thanks go to Renée Pollak for the organization, Reimar David for taking over the tongs and the grill, Ingeborg Menzl for delivering the tasty meat and of course Veronika Sexl for the financing, as well as to all the other helping hands for making desserts, salads and/or assisting with the preparations. It was a lot of fun with good food, cool drinks, hot weather, exhausting volleyball and nice people.

Volleyball tournament photo story by Renée Pollak [Link 58]



 [Link 59]

EMBL Poster prize awarded to Eszter Doma

Eszter Doma was awarded a poster prize at the European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) [Link 60] Conference "Hematopoietic Stem Cells: From the Embryo to the Aging Organism", for her poster "Generation of immortal murine hematopoietic/progenitor cell lines from transgenic mice by ectopic expression of Lhx2".




 [Link 61]

New paper accepted in OncoImmunology!

The paper "Novel non-canonical role of STAT1 in Natural Killer cell cytotoxicity" of Eva Maria Putz, Andrea Majoros, Dagmar Gotthardt, Michaela Prchal-Murphy, Eva Maria Zebedin-Brandl, Daniela Alexandra Fux, Andreas Schlattl, Robert D. Schreiber, Sebastian Carotta, Mathias Müller, Christopher Gerner, Thomas Decker & Veronika Sexl has been accepted in the journal OncoImmunology [Link 62].

Press release at www.vetmeduni.ac.at [Link 63]

Link to publication [Link 64]



 [Link 65]

New paper accepted in blood!

The paper "Palbociclib treatment of FLT3-ITD+ AML cells uncovers a kinase-dependent transcriptional regulation of FLT3 and PIM1 by CDK6" of Iris Z. Uras, Gina J. Walter, Ruth Scheicher, Florian Bellutti, Michaela Prchal-Murphy, Anca S. Tigan, Peter Valent, Florian H. Heidel, Stefan Kubicek, Claudia Scholl, Stefan Fröhling, and Veronika Sexl has been accepted in the journal blood [Link 66].

Press release at www.vetmeduni.ac.at [Link 67]

Link to publication [Link 68]



 [Link 69]

ERC Advanced Grant for Veronika Sexl

Veronika Sexl has been awarded a coveted ERC Advanced Grant from the European Research Council. The grant will provide funding of about € 2.5 million over the next five years for research into new possibilities of cancer therapy using the enzyme CDK6.


Press release at www.vetmeduni.ac.at [Link 70]

Link to European Research Council [Link 71]



 [Link 72]

Iris Uras elected for EHA-ASH-Translational Research Training in Hematology (TRTH)

Iris Uras was elected for the annual EHA-ASH-TRTH [Link 73] as one of the 20 annual trainees worldwide.

The TRTH program contains a week-long spring course, from March 11 - 18, 2016 in Milano, Italy, a meeting at the EHA [Link 74] Annual Congress from June 9 - 12, 2016 in Copenhagen, Denmark and a meeting at the ASH [Link 75] Annual Meeting from December 3 - 6, 2016 in San Diego, USA where trainees make a final presentation on the status of their research. 


Press release at www.hematology.org [Link 76]



 [Link 77]

Dagmar Gotthardt receives "Translate & Innovate" award of the OeGHO

The annual "Translate & Innovate" award [Link 78] of the Österreichische Gesellschaft für Hämatologie & Medizinische Onkologie (OeGHO) [Link 79] ("Austrian Society of Hematology and Medical Oncology") goes to Dagmar Gotthardt for her innovative submission.




 [Link 80]

New paper accepted in Cancer Discovery!

The paper "STAT5 is a key regulator in NK cells and acts as molecular switch from tumor surveillance to tumor promotion"  [Link 81]of Dagmar Gotthardt, Eva M. Putz, Eva Grundschober, Michaela Prchal-Murphy, Elisabeth Straka, Petra Kudweis, Gerwin Heller, Zsuzsanna Bago-Horvath, Agnieszka Witalisz-Siepracka, Abbarna A. Cumaraswamy, Patrick T. Gunning, Birgit Strobl, Mathias Müller, Richard Moriggl, Christian Stockmann and Veronika Sexl has been published in the journal "Cancer Discovery [Link 82]", congratulations!

Press information at www.vetmeduni.ac.at [Link 83]

First revised manuscript as .pdf [Link 84]



 [Link 85]

PhD defense Dagmar Gotthardt

Dagmar Gotthardt successfully defended her PhD thesis "The Role of STAT3 and STAT5 in murine Natural Killer Cells", congratulations!

Acknowledgements go to Sabine Fajmann and Ingeborg Menzl for creating the fabulous celebration hat!



 [Link 86]

Alexandra Schoos wins the Immuno Tools Special Award 2015!

The company Immuno Tools offers an annual molecular biological award. Alexandra Schoos of the Clinical Pharmacology wins the Immuno Tools Special Award 2015 [Link 87], congratulations


Recent publications


Leo Edlinger, Angelika Berger-Bečvař, et al.
Expansion of BCR/ABL1+ cells requires PAK2 but not PAK1 [Link ]
Journal: British Journal of Haematology


Iris Z. Uras, Ruth M. Scheicher, Veronika Sexl, et al.
Cdk6 contributes to cytoskeletal stability in erythroid cells [Link ]
Journal: Haematologica


Dagmar Gotthardt, Veronika Sexl
STATs in NK-Cells: The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly [Link ]
Journal: Frontiers in Immunology



Office: Mon. - Fri. 08:00-14:00

Student affairs: Mon. and Wed. 09:00-11:00

Tel: +43 1 25077 2901
Fax: +43 1 25077 2990
Email: Secretariat [Link 88]

Postal address:

Veterinary University of Vienna
Institute of Pharmacology and Toxicology
Veterinärplatz 1
1210 Vienna

Building HA, 3rd floor

Link to directions [Link 89]



Links to available theses [Link 90] at Vetmeduni

Jobs at Vetmeduni [Link 91]

More job offers (german) [Link 92]


Bachelor and Master Students

We are always looking for commited Bachelor and Master students, please send your applications directly to

veronika.sexl(at)vetmeduni.ac.at [Link 93]

and in CC

renee.pollak(at)vetmeduni.ac.at [Link ]