Dr. Stefanie Avril (Sassen) started her career in academic pathology in 2004 at the Department of Pathology, Technical University Munich, Germany. Her research is focused on breast cancer and gynecologic oncology, with a specific interest in prediction of treatment response and the tumor immune microenvironment.
Dr. Avril received her medical degree from the Technical University Munich, Germany following training at the University of Caen, France, Cornell Medical School, New York, Harvard Medical School, Boston, and University Hospital Zurich, Switzerland. Her scientific career includes several studies on prediction of treatment response in ovarian and breast cancer using FDG-PET molecular imaging. Subsequent studies assessed histopathological parameters of treatment response and recurrence risk in ovarian cancers and borderline tumors. During a postdoctoral research fellowship at the University of Cambridge, UK, she investigated changes in miRNA expression during breast development and their correlation with breast cancer. Subsequent studies assessed the intratumoral heterogeneity of miRNA and protein expression in breast and ovarian cancer and its implications for assessment of prognostic and predictive biomarkers.
More recently, Dr. Avril started to investigate the CXCR3-chemokine system, its association with tumor infiltrating lymphocytes and prognostic value in breast and ovarian cancer. Her current research funded by the NIH CTSC KL2 clinical research scholarship aims to investigate novel immunotherapeutic approaches to improve treatment of HER2-positive breast cancer (collaboration with Drs. Alex Huang, Ruth Keri).