Center for Molecular Medicine Cologne
12.50 p.m.

Welcome Address

Esther von Stebut-Borschitz  - Vice Dean of Science, Medical Faculty, University of Cologne

Sabine Eming - Vice Chair - Center for Molecular Medicine Cologne, University of Cologne

Michal Ruth Schweiger - Markus Stoffel - Roman-Ulrich Müller
Scientific Coordinators - CMMC Symposium 2023

Session I: Nucleic Acid Chemistry (Innate Immunity)

Chairs: Stephanie Kath-Schorr and Christian Pallasch (Cologne, DE)

1.00 - 1.30 p.m.

Nucleic acid recognition by the innate immune system
Veit Hornung
Gene Center and Department of Biochemistry, LMU Munich, MPI of Biochemistry - Munich, DE

1.30 - 2.00 p.m.

Optical Control of mRNA Translation 
Andrea Rentmeister
Institute of Biochemistry, University of Muenster - Muenster, DE

2.00 - 2.30 p.m.

Living in the World of RNA Therapeutics made possible by Biomimetic Chemistry
Mano Manoharan
Alnylam Pharmaceuticals - Cambridge, US

2.30 - 3.00 p.m.

Coffee Break

Session II: Nucleic Acids Delivery and Visualization

Chairs: Holger Grüll and Ines Neundorf (Cologne, DE)

3.00 - 3.30 p.m.

Design and evolution of protein carriers for nucleic acids
Don Hilvert
Chemistry Deptartment, ETH Zurich - Zurich, CH

3.30 - 4.00 p.m.

Imaging and microscopy of RNA in living cells
Andres Jäschke 

Institute of Pharmacy and Molecular Biotechnology, University of Heidelberg - Heidelberg, DE

4.00 - 4.30 p.m.

mRNA vaccines for the treatment of cancer
Mathias Vormehr
BioNTech SE - Mainz, DE

4.30 - 5.00 p.m.

Coffee Break

5.00 - 6.00 p.m.

Keynote Lecture I - Regulation of metabolism by miRNAs and RNA binding proteins

Markus Stoffel
Institute for Molecular Health Sciences, ETH Zurich - Zurich, CH

Laudation of the key note speaker by Roman-Ulrich Müller (Cologne, DE)

6.00 - 9.00 p.m.

CMMC Poster Session and Welcome Get-Together

Session III: Technology and future applications (e.g. mRNAs, ncRNAs)

Chairs: Volker Böhm and Margarete Odenthal (Cologne, DE)

9.00 - 9.30 a.m.

RNA gain of function signatures in neurological disease
Maurice S Swanson
Dept. of Mol. Genetics and Microbiology, Univ. of Florida - Gainesville, US

9.30 - 10.00 a.m.

Designing and characterizing new materials approaches for therapeutics
Molly Stevens
Royal School of Mines, Imperial College London - London, GB

10.00 - 10.30 a.m.

Coffee Break

10.30 - 11.00 a.m.

RNA-based therapeutics for polycystic kidney disease
Vishal Patel
Dept. of Internal Medicine and Division of Nephrology, UT Southwstern Medical Center Dallas, US

11.00 - 11.30 a.m.

Reading and writing RNA modifications by ribozymes
Claudia Höbartner
Inst. of Organic Chemistry, University of Wuerzburg - Wuerzburg, DE

11.30 - 1.30 p.m.

Lunch Break with Poster Presentation at the venue

Session IV: Technology and applications development (e.g. Aptamers, RNAi, snRNAs, ASO)

Chairs: Robert Hänsel-Hertsch and Axel Hillmer - Cologne, DE

1.30 - 2.00 p.m.

Combating thrombosis with RNA aptamers: from concept to the acute care clinic
Bruce A Sullenger
Surgical Sciences, Cardiovascular Biology Laboratory, Duke University School of Medicine - Durham, US

2.00 - 2.30 p.m.

U1 Adaptor silencing technology
Sam I Gunderson
Dept. of Mol. Biology & Biochemistry, Rutgers University - Piscataway, US

2.30 - 2.50 p.m.

Coffee Break

2.50 - 3.20 p.m.

RNA Aptamers and RNA activation in common and rare diseases
Nagy Habib
Dept. of Surgery & Cancer, Hammersmith Hospital, Imperial College London - London, GB

3.20 - 3.50 p.m.

Applying lessons learned from Duchenne exon skipping therapy development to the N=1 setting
Annemieke Aartsma-Rus 
'Dept. of Human Genetics, Leiden University - Leiden, NL

3.50 - 4.20 p.m.

The coming of age of RNA-cleaving DNAzymes
Manuel Etzkorn
Helmholtz Research Center Juelich, Biomolecular NMR Center of Heinrich-Heine-University Duesseldorf – Duesseldorf, DE

4.20 - 4.40 p.m.

Announcement of the three CMMC Poster Prize Winners
Michal Ruth Schweiger and Roman-Ulrich Müller (Cologne)

4.40 - 5.00 p.m.

Coffee Break

5.00 - 6.00 p.m.

Keynote Lecture II - RNAi therapeutics: The next chapter

Akshay Vaishnaw
Alnylam Pharmaceuticals - Cambridge, US

Laudation of the key note speaker by Markus Stoffel (Cologne, DE)


Session V: CRISPR and RNA-protein interaction and modulation

Chairs: Roman-Ulrich Müller and Simon Pöpsel (Cologne, DE)

9.00 - 9.30 a.m.

Riboregulation: biology, mechanisms and scope
Matthias Hentze
European Molecular Biology Laboratory (EMBL) University of Heidelberg, Molecular Medicine Partnership Unit - Heidelberg, DE

9.30 - 10.00 a.m.

Modulating the conformation and function of disease-relevant RNA with small molecules
Amanda E Hargrove
Dept. of Chemistry, Dept. of Biochemistry, Duke University - Durham, US

10.00 - 10.20 a.m.

Coffee Break

10.20 - 10.50 a.m.

Development of small molecule inhibitors of SARS-CoV-2 cap methylase
Thomas Tuschl
Laboratory of RNA Molecular Biology, The Rockefeller University, New York City, US

10.50 - 11.20 a.m.

New Frontiers in CRISPR-Cas, beyond RNA-guided nucleases
Ailong Ke
Dept. of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Cornell University, Ithaca, US

11.20 - 11.50 a.m.

Genome editing: what we have learned in preclinical models
Gerald Schwank
Inst. of Pharmacology and Toxicology, University of Zurich - Zurich, CH

11.50 - 12.30 p.m.

Lunch Break

Session VI: Preclinical and Clinical Application

Chairs: Hien Nguyen and Michal Ruth Schweiger (Cologne, DE)

12.30 - 1.00 p.m.

RNAi therapeutics for chronic HBV
Man-Fung Yuen
Div. of Gastroenterology & Hepatology, Univ. of Hong Kong – Hong Kong, HK

1.00 - 1.30 p.m.

Awarding of the CMMC Poster Prizes and short talks (3 x 10 min.) given by the poster awardees
Michal R. Schweiger and Roman-Ulrich Müller (Cologne)

1.30 - 1.45 p.m.

Coffee Break

1.45 - 2.15 p.m.

Nucleic Acid Platforms: US and EU regulatory challenges 
Jacob S Sherkow
College of Law, University of Illinois - Urbana-Champaign, US

2.15 - 2.45 p.m.

Nucleic acid therapeutics for Huntington’s disease: challenges and opportunities
Sarah Tabrizi
Huntington’s Disease Centre and Dept. of Neurodegenerative Disease, National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, UCL Institute of Neurology - London, GB

2.45 - 3.15 p.m.

ASO therapeutics becoming clinical routine?
Richard Finkel
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital - Memphis, US

3.15 - 3.30 p.m.

Summary, open questions, closing remarks and leave-taking
Michal Ruth Schweiger – Markus Stoffel – Roman-Ulrich Müller


Registration and participation in the CMMC Symposium "From Concepts to Clinic: a New Era of Nucleic Acid Therapeutics" is free of charge! Registration is required.

If you require an official invitation letter for travel refunding or visa issues, please contact Debora Grosskopf-Kroiher - debora.grosskopf-kroiher[at]

For questions regarding childcare please contact zmmk-office[at]

Main Lecture Hall, Faculty of Medicine, University of Cologne
Access only possible from Joseph-Stelzmann-Str. 26 - please follow the yellow CMMC Symposium signs.

Poster Session - CMMC Symposium

Call for submission of poster abstracts until September 10, 2023.

Authors will be notified by September 11, 2023, if their poster is selected for a poster presentation.


Registration and participation in the CMMC Symposium 2023 is free of charge! Please register here

Certified with 17 CME Credits

by the Nordrheinische Akademie für aerztliche Fort- und Weiterbildung, Duesseldorf (Germany).

Poster - CMMC Symposium 2023

Program - CMMC Symposium 2023

We envision to bring together newest knowledge of nucleic acid drug research with basic principles and clinical implications with the hope to boost nucleic acid therapeutic research.
The Chairs of the Scientific Organization Committee - CMMC Symposium 2023

We gratefully acknowledge support by