Prof. Dieter Henrik Heiland MD, PhD
Attending Neurosurgeon/Oberarzt Neurochirurgie, Department of Neurosurgery, Medical Center University of Freiburg
Associated professor (Adjunct), Department of Neurological Surgery, Northwestern University
Principal Investigator, Microenvironment and Immunology Research Laboratory
Freiburg, Germany / Evanston (IL), USA

As a Neurosurgical Scientist, my research focused on the analysis of spatially resolved multi-omic data and in-silico modeling of high-dimensional systems. In my doctoral research, I investigated the epigenetic regulation of brain tumors and its impact on transcriptional plasticity, and as a postdoctoral researcher, I explored radiogenomic modeling and metabolic alterations of malignant gliomas. I established the basic research branch of the Translational Neuro-Oncology Research Group at the Medical Center University of Freiburg to advance our understanding of the importance of the brain microenvironment. Our research group strives to achieve a deeper understanding of cellular state and tissue architecture through novel mapping of transcriptional diversity. Over the last years, my laboratory has made notable contributions to the field, including insights into the mechanism of immunosuppression in glioblastoma (1-3) and the curation of a comprehensive atlas of spatially resolved multiomics from various malignant brain tumors and healthy brain samples (1).


  • Ravi, V. M., Will, P., Kuekelhaus, J., Sun, N., Joseph, K., Salie, H., … Heiland, D.H. (2022). Spatiotemporal heterogeneity of glioblastoma is dictated by microenvironmental interference. Cancer Cell,
  • Heiland, D.H., Ravi, V. M., Behringer, S. P., Frenking, J. H., Wurm, J., Joseph, K., … Schnell, O. (2019). Tumor-associated reactive astrocytes aid the evolution of immunosuppressive environment in glioblastoma. Nature Communications, 10(1), 2541. PMCID: PMC6559986
  • Ravi, V. M., Neidert, N., Will, P., Joseph, K., Maier, J. P., Kückelhaus, J., … Heiland, D. H. (2022). T-cell dysfunction in the glioblastoma microenvironment is mediated by myeloid cells releasing interleukin-10. Nature Communications, 13(1), 925. PMCID: PMC8854421