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Team Epigenome-based Precision Medicine


Eleni M. Tomazou, PhD

Principal Investigator
+43 1 40470 4045

Eleni Tomazou has been a PI at the St. Anna Children’s Cancer Research Institute (CCRI, Vienna, Austria) since January 2018. She has established a research program focusing on epigenome-based precision medicine at CCRI. She has a strong background in epigenomics research and two years’ experience in clinical diagnostics and management of a high-throughput diagnostics lab. Prior to joining CCRI, she did her PhD at the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute (Cambridge, UK) and postdoctoral training at the Broad Institute and the Harvard Department for Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology (Cambridge, USA). She is a 2023 ERC consolidator grantee and a 2016 recipient of the Elise Richter Fellowship, a prestigious career development grant for female scientists offered by the Austrian Science Foundation (FWF). In her free time she enjoys exploring the hidden gems of Vienna.

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Matteo Colombo, MSc

PhD Student
+43 1 40470 4014

Matteo obtained his bachelor's degree in Biotechnology at the University of Milano Bicocca and then moved to the University of Trieste, pursuing a master's degree in functional genomics. In Trieste, he had the opportunity to perform his master's thesis at the International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology, working on breast cancer and nuclear dynamics. Matteo joined the Tomazou lab as a PhD student in 2022. His project will be focused on ribosomes and their contribution to pediatric sarcomas, allowing him to fulfill his passion for cancer biology. In his free time, he enjoys playing sports and videogames, watching tv-series, and walking outdoors.


Nikolaus Mandlburger, BSc


Nikolaus has obtained his bachelor degree in the field of microbiology and genetics at the University of Vienna, before starting the master programs genetics and developmental biology as well as bioinformatics. In 2021 he joined the Tomazou lab for his bioinformatics master thesis. In his project, he strives to fruitfully incorporate different kinds of data into a framework for risk stratification of Ewing sarcoma patients based on liquid biopsies. In his free time he enjoys sailing, making music and gardening.


Daria Pająk, MSc

Research assistant
+43 1 40470 4014

Daria has done her bachelor’s studies in biotechnology at the University of Silesia, then she completed her master’s degree in genetics and molecular biosciences at the University of Helsinki. Daria joined the lab in 2021 as a technical assistant. She spends her free time either cycling or enjoying a walk through a city.


Peter Peneder, MSc

PhD Student
+43 1 40470 4034

Peter did his bachelor's in microbiology and genetics before switching to bioinformatics for his master's. After an exchange semester at the University of Amsterdam, where he worked on finding novel B- and T-cell receptor alleles, he joined the lab in 2018 for his master thesis.

Peter is developing and applying bioinformatic methods and machine learning approaches to learn more about how pediatric cancers arise and how to use liquid biopsies to improve their identification, detection, and monitoring. He is especially interested in fragmentomics, machine learning, and computational methods for single-cell data analysis. To work on the latter, he joined the Marioni lab at the European Bioinformatics Institute and the Cancer Research UK Cambridge Institute as a visiting PhD student in 2022. In his free time, he enjoys listening to podcasts, bouldering, running, and discussions about philosophy.


Jason Sims, PhD

Staff Scientist
+43 1 40470 4014

Jason did his Bachelor and Master studies at the University of Trieste and the Open University of Cambridge studying chromosomal translocations and genome adaptations. For his PhD he moved to the University of Vienna to study the control of meiotic recombination at the repetitive ribosomal DNA (rDNA) region. He continued to study the rDNA focusing on the ribosomal RNA and tissue specific ribosomal variants during his PostDocs at the University of Vienna and the University of Hamburg. In the Tomazou group his main project will focus on the determination of ribosomal variants as drivers for cancerogenesis and drug resistance in the context of Ewing Sarcoma. Jason spends his free time pursuing various family activities with his son and wife. He also enjoys cooking and skiing.


Marcus Tötzl, MSc

PhD Student
+43 1 40470 4034

Marcus obtained his bachelor’s and master’s degree in Molecular Biotechnology. His scientific journey took him to a Basel-based start-up, BioVersys, where he focused on identifying new drug targets in antibiotic resistance mechanisms, and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, where he investigated the mode of action of a novel cancer vulnerability. The project he has recently embarked on for his PhD focuses on a functional dissection of the dysregulated enhancer landscape in Ewing sarcoma, which allows him to pursue his fascination for single cell technologies and other next generation sequencing applications. In his leisure time he fancies himself a cinema lover and enjoys reading books and graphic novels as well as practicing different kinds of sport.

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Ornella Urzì, MSc

+43 1 40470 4034

Ornella did her Bachelor´s in Biology and Master´s in Medical Biotechnologies and Molecular Medicine at the University of Palermo. She investigated the role of microRNAs carried by multiple myeloma-derived extracellular vesicles in bone disease. During her PhD she studied colorectal cancer pre-metastatic niche in the liver, focusing her attention on the hepatocytes phenotypic changes induced by colorectal cancer-derived extracellular vesicles. She also has spent a period at the University of Göteborg where she learnt how to isolate extracellular vesicles from tissues. In 2023, she joined the Tomazou group as a PostDoc. Her aim is to establish a differentiation platform based on induced pluripotent stem cells to model different types of sarcomas and identify early alterations in gene regulation. Ornella spends her free time surrounded by nature or in science museums. She loves traveling and cooking, especially cakes.



Former research assistant

Now Senior Scientist at ViennaLab

Adrian Stütz, PhD


Stefan Terlecki-Zaniewicz, PhD

Former PostDoc

Now MSL at GlaxoSmithKline


Abdelrahman Abdelgawad, MSc

Former master student

Now Manufacturing Scientist at Takeda


Lisa Daniel, MSc

Former PhD student

Now Sr. Associate at Biogen

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