Alia Abukiwan

Dr. Alia Abukiwan

University Hospital of Heidelberg


Alia Abukiwan is a research scientist and project leader in the Epigenetics Research Branch of the Division Endocrinology at the University Hospital of Heidelberg. She has more than 10 years of experience in conducting research, focusing on the epigenetics mechanisms in cancer, where she aims to understand the disease’s mechanisms. Her research integrates the areas of health outcomes and survivorship. Dr. Abukiwan holds Bachelor of Science in Biology from Al-albeit University of the Kingdom of Jordan, and a Master of Science and Doctorate of Philosophy Degrees in Molecular Biology from the University of Heidelberg. She completed her postdoctoral fellowships in epigenetics at the German Cancer Research Center in Heidelberg and has published seven articles in peer-reviewed journals and one book chapter in the broad areas epigenetics in cancer.



Epigenetics in human health and disease

Epigenetics is a major mechanism in human health and disease. Data from a range of diseases (cancer, neurological, immunological disorders and metabolic diseases ) have uncovered altered epigenomes arising from mutations, altered expression and/or copy number alterations of numerous epigenetic factors (histones, DNA and chromatin modifying enzymes, reader proteins, chromatin modulators and noncoding RNAs). Genome-wide analyses have illustrated the relationship between altered epigenetic states (e.g., modified DNA, histones and chromatin packaging) and disease onset and progression. My talk, will cover the most current knowledge of epigenetic events in disease models. In addition, it will highlight the impact that preclinical and clinical epigenetic therapeutics have on multiple diseases including cancer. I will also survey some research results and conceptual understanding of fundamental mechanisms of epigenetic signaling, especially as they relate to regulation of gene expression programs.