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Colorectal Surgery

The research group conducts clinical and molecular genetic (tumor, blood and faeces) studies on colorectal cancer (crc).

About the Group

The colorectal surgery group engages in both clinical and molecular-translational research. The main aims for the translational projects are detection and validation of new diagnostic, prognostic, predictive and monitoring molecular biomarkers, and to make them feasible in the routine clinical setting across laboratories. This effort focuses on achieving a more personalized treatment of patients.

The Group Studies

  • Primary tumor colon - rectum (crc)
  • Early cancer in the rectum
  • Liver Metastases
  • Liquid biopsy at crc
  • Oncological treatment of colorectal cancer
  • Tumor cells in circulation and bone marrow
  • Cultivation / drug testing on living cancer cells

Innovation as a tool towards advanced treatment possibilities, is an important part of the group's effort and several patents have been registered by the group during the past years.

Project Teams

The colorectal surgery research group covers a broad range of topics and consists of two sub-teams.

Clinical Studies

  • Clinical studies on colorectal cancer
    • Survival, prognostic factors, complications to surgery
  • Transanal endoscopic microsurgery (TEM) for localization of large polyps and early rectum cancer
    • Complications. Survival.We have regional function for this patient Group
  • Together with geriatricians (Ass. Prof. Siri Rostoft)
    • Broad geriatric assessment to assess operational risk in the elderly. Completed Phd Siri Rostoft
    • Broad geriatric assessment to identify patients at risk of postoperative complications and investigate whether preoperative interventions give a benefit to these patients. RCT, PhD project, fellow Nina Ommundsen
    • GoSafe - study, multinational, multicenter - functional pre-postoperative function in elderly patients
  • Together with health economists (Ass Prof. Eline Aas)
    • Model to estimate the cost and survival of colorectal cancer. Completed PhD project - Pål Joranger
  • Together with radiologist (General Ellen Viktil)
    • MR staging of rectal polyps and early cancer



  • Molecular Genetics Dept of Molecular Oncology, OUH
    • Prof. Ragnhild A Lothe
    • Ass. Prof Anita Sveen
    • Prof. Rolf I Skotheim
    • Prof. Guro E Lind
  • Large-scale genome analyzes (ploydi), Håvard Danielsen, Dept. Medical Informatics
  • Pathology, Aud Svindland, Else Marit Løberg, Frode Jahnsen
  • Oncology, Kjell Magne Tveit, Marianne Grønlie Guren, Tormod Kyrre Guren, Olav Dajani
  • Liver Surgery, Bjørn Atle Bjørnbeth, Bård Røsok, Kristoffer Watten Brudvik
  • Radiology, Andreas Abildgaard, Vanja Cengija, Ellen Viktil


  • Rodrigo Dienstmann PI, Oncology Data Science (ODysSey) Group, Vall D’Hebron Institute of oncology, Barcelona, Spain
  • Research Scientist, Computational Oncology Group, Sage Bionetworks
  • Justin Guinney, Vice President, Computational Oncology group at Sage Bionetworks 
  • European Society of Coloproctology collaborating group.

Selected Publications

  1. Bruun J, Kryeziu K, Eide PW, Moosavi SH, Eilertsen IA, Langerud J, Røsok BI, Totland MZ, Brunsell TH, Pellinen T, Saarela J, Bergsland CH, Palmer HG, Brudvik KW, Guren T, Dienstmann R, Guren MG, Nesbakken A, Bjørnbeth BA, Sveen A, Lothe RA. Patient-derived organoids from multiple colorectal cancer liver metastases reveal moderate intra-patient pharmacotranscriptomic heterogeneity.  Clin Cancer Res. 2020 Apr 16. [Epub ahead of print]
  2. Skrede OJ, De Raedt S, Kleppe A, Hveem TS, Liestøl K, Maddison J, Askautrud HA, Pradhan M, Nesheim JA, Albregtsen F, Farstad IN, Domingo E, Church DN, Nesbakken A, Shepherd NA, Tomlinson I, Kerr R, Novelli M, Kerr DJ, Danielsen HE.  Deep learning for prediction of colorectal cancer outcome: a discovery and validation study. Lancet. 2020; 395 (10221):350-360. 
  3. Smeby J, Sveen A, Bergsland CH, Eilertsen IA, Danielsen SA, Eide PW, Hektoen M, Guren MG, Nesbakken A, Bruun J, Lothe RA.. Exploratory analyses of consensus molecular subtype-dependent associations of TP53 mutations with immunomodulation and prognosis in colorectal cancer. ESMO Open. 2019 Jun 24;4(3):e000523
  4. Brunsell TH, Sveen A, Bjørnbeth BA, Røsok BI, Danielsen SA, Brudvik KW, Berg KCG, Johannessen B, Cengija V, Abildgaard A, Guren MG, Nesbakken A, Lothe RA. High Concordance and Negative Prognostic Impact of RAS/BRAF/PIK3CA Mutations in Multiple Resected Colorectal Liver Metastases.   Clin Colorectal Cancer. 2020;19:e26-e47
  5. Brunsell TH, Cengija V, Sveen A, Bjørnbeth BA, Røsok BI, Brudvik KW, Guren MG, Lothe RA, Abildgaard A, Nesbakken A. Heterogeneous radiological response to neoadjuvant therapy is associated with poor prognosis after resection of colorectal liver metastases. Eur J Surg Oncol. 2019; 45:2340-2346. 
  6. Dienstmann R, Villacampa G, Sveen A, Mason MJ, Niedzwiecki D, Nesbakken A, Moreno V, Warren RS, Lothe RA, Guinney J. Relative contribution of clinicopathological variables, genomic markers, transcriptomic subtyping and microenvironment features for outcome prediction in stage II/III colorectal cancer. Ann Oncol. 2019; 30:1622-1629. 
  7. Smeby J, Sveen A, Merok MA, Danielsen SA, Eilertsen IA, Guren MG, Dienstmann R, Nesbakken A, Lothe RA.  CMS-dependent prognostic impact of KRAS and BRAFV600E mutations in primary colorectal cancer. Ann Oncol. 2018; 29:1227-1234
  8. Sveen A, Bruun J, Eide PW, Eilertsen IA, Ramirez L, Murumägi A, Arjama M, Danielsen SA, Kryeziu K, Elez E, Tabernero J, Guinney J, Palmer HG, Nesbakken A, Kallioniemi O, Dienstmann R, Lothe RA.  Colorectal Cancer Consensus Molecular Subtypes Translated to Preclinical Models Uncover Potentially Targetable Cancer Cell Dependencies  Clin Cancer Res. 2018; 24:794-806
  9. Joranger P, Nesbakken A, Sorbye H, Hoff G, Oshaug A, Aas E. Survival and costs of colorectal cancer treatment and effects of changing treatment strategies: a model approach. Eur J Health Econ. 2020; 21: 321-334
  10. Ommundsen N, Wyller TB, Nesbakken A, Bakka AO, Jordhøy MS, Skovlund E, Rostoft S. Preoperative geriatric assessment and tailored interventions in frail older patients with colorectal cancer: a randomized controlled trial. Colorectal Dis. 2018; 20: 16-25
  11. Dienstmann R, Villacampa G, Sveen A, Mason MJ, Niedzwiecki D, Nesbakken A, Moreno V, Warren RS, Lothe RA, Guinney J. Relative contribution of clinicopathological variables, genomic markers, transcriptomic subtyping and microenvironment features for outcome prediction in stage II/III colorectal cancer. Ann Oncol. 2019; 30: 1622-1629.
  12. Dienstmann R, Mason MJ, Sinicrope FA, Phipps AI, Tejpar S, Nesbakken A, Danielsen SA, Sveen A, Buchanan DD, Clendenning M, Rosty C, Bot B, Alberts SR, Milburn Jessup J, Lothe RA, Delorenzi M, Newcomb PA, Sargent D, Guinney J.  Prediction of overall survival in stage II and III colon cancer beyond TNM system: a retrospective, pooled biomarker study. Ann Oncol. 2017; 28: 1023-1031
  13. Labori KJ, Guren MG, Brudvik KW, Røsok BI, Waage A, Nesbakken A, Larsen S, Dueland S, Edwin B, Bjørnbeth BA.  Resection of synchronous liver metastases between radiotherapy and definitive surgery for locally advanced rectal cancer: short term surgical outcomes, overall and recurrence free survivals. Colorectal Dis. 2017; 19: 731-8 
  14. Kristjansson SR, Nesbakken A, Jordhøy MS, Skovlund E, Audisio RA, Johannessen HO, Bakka A, Wyller TB.  Comprehensive geriatric assessment can predict complications in elderly patients after elective surgery for colorectal cancer: a prospective observational cohort study.  Crit Rev Oncol Hematol. 2010; 76: 208-17
  15. Lind GE, Danielsen SA, Ahlquist T, Merok MA, Andresen K, Skotheim RI, Hektoen M, Rognum TO, Meling GI, Hoff G, Bretthauer M, Thiis-Evensen E, Nesbakken A, Lothe RA.  Identification of an epigenetic biomarker panel with high sensitivity and specificity for colorectal cancer and adenomas  Mol Cancer. 2011; 10: 85
Published Aug. 7, 2014 3:05 PM - Last modified May 19, 2020 3:15 PM


Group leader


Detailed list of participants