Liquid Biomarkers - AG Forster

Michael Forster

Liquid Biomarkers

Michael Forster

Group Leader

Michael Forster

Mission Statement

The Junior Research Group for Liquid Biomarkers was established in response to the growing interest for studying liquid biomarkers including nucleic acid sequencing from fluids such as blood, saliva, and urine. This Junior Group consists of several doctoral researchers, postdocs, and a habilitated group leader. The group is well-connected with the local scientific groups including the microbiome research group and the service platforms for biobanking, sequencing (DFG Competence Center for Genomic Analysis CCGA), bioinformatics, data management, and IT, as well as with the DFG Molecular Imaging North Competence Center.

Key Focus

For liquid biomarker research we cooperate with excellent clinicians and researchers from the University Hospital’s campus in Kiel (Internal Medicine, Women’s Hospital,  Dept. of Surgery,  Inst. of Pathology,  Dept. of Urology,  Inst. of Experimental Tumor Research, Inst. of Clinical Chemistry) or Lübeck, the Rostock University Medical Center, the Zealand University Hospital, the Oslo Rikshospitalet, the Lithuanian University of Health Sciences, the Università degli Studi di Firenze, and the Center for Genomics of Non-communicable Diseases (CGNPH) at Lagos University. We love to support clinician scientists in habilitation research projects (currently bladder, esophagus) and in doctoral research projects (currently lung, rectum), and are open to international cooperations. The research topics of the group range from sample collection, preservation, nucleic acid isolation, quality control/measurement methods and sequencing methods, to the bioinformatic detection of often only small amounts of molecules that are the focus of interest, as well as their biological and clinical interpretation. Clinical applications of liquid biomarkers include therapy response monitoring of diseases for improving therapy protocols, differential diagnosis, early detection of diseases, and susceptibility.


Molecular profiling to understand diseases and enable prevention or curative treatments.

Harvesting of blood plasma and leukocyte fractions from Streck cfDNA BCT blood tubes.
Urine samples.

Ongoing Cooperations

German-Italian URINOMICS project (UKSH and University of Florence, IT)

German-Nigerian GAIIA project (UKSH and University of Lagos, Nigeria)

UKSH-Rostock rectal cancer project

German-Danish cooperation on lung cancer (UKSH and Zealand University Hospital Naestved, DK), emerged from EU project Changing Cancer Care

German-Norwegian cooperation PSC (UKSH and Oslo University Hospital)

Main Projects / Funding

Selected Publications