Von Karstedt is considered a renowned expert in the field of cancer cell death mechanisms and the communication between cancer cells and the immune system. Her focus is on the interface of tumor-immune cell interactions and aims to improve therapies that activate the immune system in cancer. Von Karstedt is certain: "Understanding the interface of tumor-immune cell interactions is an essential key for future targeted cancer therapies." Since 2017, von Karstedt has been a Max Eder Junior Research Group Leader at the Department of Translational Genomics and at CECAD, where she has successfully established her own research group. An important question von Karstedt and her team are investigating is how regulated cell death (apoptosis, ferroptosis, necroptosis) influences the selection-of-the-fittest of cancer cells. Recently, von Karstedt and her team succeeded in identifying two new targets for therapies of small cell lung cancer and published their findings in the prestigious journal Nature Communications.
Von Karstedt also leads a project in each of two Collaborative Research Centers at the University of Cologne (SFB1399, SFB1403) as well as a joint project within a collaborative grant from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), called InCa. Additionally, Von Karstedt is a board member of the newly founded Mildred Scheel School of Oncology (MSSO) Cologne-Bonn.
Univ.-Prof. Dr. Silvia von Karstedt was born in Hamburg in 1983 and studied biology at the Universities of Hamburg and Heidelberg from 2003 to 2008. In 2013, she obtained her Ph.D. in biology from Imperial College London, United Kingdom. She then worked as a postdoctoral researcher at UCL Cancer Institute, London, until 2016. From 2016 to 2017, she conducted research at the Francis Crick Institute, London, before moving to the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Cologne as a Max Eder Junior Group Leader funded by German Cancer Aid (Deustche Krebshilfe).