Cancer Research: Augsburg joins new National Tumor Centre in Bavaria

University medicine at Augsburg belongs to a network of four university hospitals, including Würzburg, Erlangen, and Regensburg (WERA), which have joined forces for the first time to form a new Bavarian site for the National Centre for Tumor Diseases (NCT) as part of the German Cancer Research Centre (DZKF). The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) announced the news on the 2nd of February. Würzburg’s university medicine will coordinate the new ‘NCT WERA’ site, with the network securing funding of €14.5 million per year from the federal ministry.

Design of the future medical campus of the University of Augsburg BHBVT Gesellschaft von Architekten mbH Berlin

The goal of the NCT is to further expand patient-centred cancer research, providing more cancer patients in Germany with better access to innovative methods in diagnostics and therapy. The rapid development of new cancer drugs and personalised medicine tailored to individual patients are also due to be further expanded. Together, the four WERA partners provide cancer services to an area covering around eight million people. The new centre of tumor diseases (NCT WERA) will focus on the further expansion of innovative immunotherapies and the development of new molecular therapeutics, among other things. Additionally, it aims to provide targeted opportunities for early-career scientists and expand the existing network of clinical trials to cover large rural regions.

Prof. Dr Martin Trepel from Augsburg University Hospital and director of the Comprehensive Cancer Centre Augsburg, says “Our selection as a site for the National Centre for Tumor Diseases is a great honour for the WERA network and an enormously important step for cancer research. Together with and for our patients, we can now expand and implement cancer diagnostics and therapy as well as the innovative patient-oriented tumor research that is so indispensable to progress. The combination of treatment and research will noticeably and sustainably change and improve the nature of cancer care in Germany, particularly in our region.”

The new Bavarian NCT site will significantly expand the research and clinical trials infrastructure at all four WERA sites, advancing the translation of results from basic science into clinical studies and clinical care, especially in rural regions represented by the WERA network. The WERA alliance of Comprehensive Cancer Centres (CCC) was recognised by the Deutschen Krebshilfe last year as being leading centres in oncology. Already, more than 10,000 patients per year have joined joint clinical trials through the alliance. The next step for NCT WERA is the development of joint organisational structures and the further expansion of research activities with the active involvement of patients.

Background to the “National Centre for Tumor Diseases”

The National Centre for Tumor Diseases (NCT) is a long-term cooperation between the German Cancer Research Centre (DKFZ), excellent partners in university medicine, and other outstanding research partners at various locations throughout Germany. The first NCT site was established in Heidelberg in 2004, with Dresden becoming the second site in 2015. As part of the ‘national decade against cancer,’ launched by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) at the beginning of 2019, the NCT has now been expanded nationwide to include four new sites following a selection process lasting several years. NCT WERA is one of the new sites (Source and further information: German Cancer Research Centre (