Up to date high expertise must be offered in case metastases that may be present at the first tumor diagnosis or develop during follow up.
Professor Link and Team were the first worldwide to discover, that treatment individualization (cell culture and molecular biology) improves response and survival, and the possibility to downstage/resect liver metastases, even with split time procedures.
Professor Link with his Ulm Team „FOGT“ have made top innovative contributions to treat patients with metastases that have been primarily regarded as nonresectable/incurable. Results were provided 20 years before these strategies now have become standard and or are the aims of up to date research efforts. Cure in primarily noncurable patients could be achieved. Besides the clinical innovations Professor Link and his team conducted basic research in the laboratory with human cancer cell culture. The results were translated directly into successful protocols. The research was funded by German Governmental (DFG), University, and industrial (medac, Roche) research grants. The team helped that their modern treatment strategies and scientific projects now are national/international standards. Exchange/cooperation e.g. with H.Bismuth, M.Deraco, P.Sugarbaker.
Professor Link and Team were the first to combine downstaging, treatment individualization and modern surgery achieving survival improvement in resectable and in nonresectable colorectal liver metastases (CRLM).
Professor Link with Team established Cytoreductive Surgery/Hyperthermic Intraperitoneal Chemotherapy (CRS/HIPEC; „Sugarbaker-Procedure“) in Ulm as one of two initial German centers and supported the presence of his professional friend Paul Sugarbaker reporting his innovative method in German and other European high level prestigious meetings.
Improvement of survival exspectancy. Improvement of techniques
(e.g. bloodless operation). Downstaging to resectability, Improvement of Response/Secondary Resectability/Survival by Treatment Individualization. Conduction of Phase II and Phase III Trials.
Why and how?:
Possibilities in Ulm: Surgery, Chemotherapy, Psychooncology, Follow up, Laboratory for Basic Research provided by one Team at one Surgical Department. International cooperations by several team members trained in basic research and surgical oncology (K.H.Link, Ludger Staib, Marko Kornmann). Excellent cooperation with P. V. and K. Danenberg at LAC/USC Kenneth Norris Cancer Center, CA, USA. Training visits with H. Bismuth, CHB, Paris, France.
K. H.Link and team (FOGT and others) with multiple highly rated publications (see further down)