Dr. Berna Özdemir


Dr. Berna Özdemir graduated from the Medical School of the University of Bern in 2007. She started as a PhD student in Prof. George Thalmann’s lab at the University of Bern, working on the stromal reaction of prostate cancer bone metastasis.

Berna conducted her post-doc training with Prof. Raghu Kalluri at Harvard University, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and at the University of Texas, MD Anderson Cancer Center. Her main research interests were genetically engineered mouse models of pancreatic cancer and the contribution of cancer associated fibroblasts to cancer progression. Berna obtained her MD PhD degree in 2012 and has been an active clinician since 2013. Dr. Özdemir is currently completing her residency in medical oncology at the Lausanne University Hospital.

Berna is interested in elucidating race- and sex-related differences in cancer susceptibility and mortality and personalized cancer prevention approaches. She is part of the personalized analytical oncology group at the Lausanne University Hospital and Director of Clinical Activities of the International Cancer Prevention Institute.



  • Racial differences in cancer susceptibility and survival: more than the color of the skin? – Özdemir BC, Dotto GP – Trends Can March 2017, Vol 3, No 3 181-197
  • The molecular signature of the stroma response in prostate cancer-induced osteoblastic bone metastasis highlights expansion of hematopoietic and prostate epithelial stem cell niches. – Özdemir BC, Hensel J, Secondini C, Wetterwald A, Schwaninger R, Fleischmann A, Raffelsberger W, Poch O, Delorenzi M, Temanni R, Mills IG, van der Pluijm G, Thalmann GN, Cecchini MG. – PLoS One, 2014 Dec8, 9(12):e114530
  • Depletion of carcinoma-associated fibroblasts and fibrosis induces immunosuppression and accelerates pancreas cancer with diminished survival – Özdemir BC, Pentcheva-Hoang T, Carstens JL, Zheng X, Wu CC, Simpson TR, Laklai H, Sugimoto H, Kahlert C, Novitskiy SV, De Jesus-Acosta A, Sharma P, Heidari P, Mahmood U, Chin L, Moses HL, Weaver VM, Maitra A, Allison JP, LeBleu VS, Kalluri R. – Cancer Cell. 2014 Jun 16;25(6):719-34
  • TGF-β1-containing exosomes from injured epithelial cells activate fibroblasts to initiate tissue regenerative responses and fibrosis. – Borges FT, Melo SA, Özdemir BC, Kato N, Revuelta I, Miller CA, Gattone VH 2nd, LeBleu VS, Kalluri R. – J Am Soc Nephrol. 2013 Feb;24(3):385-92.