Skip to content

Sonja Dorfer, PhD


Research statement

The aim of my research project is to identify drugs capable of targeting tumor development and progression in patients with recessive dystrophic epidermolysis bullosa (RDEB) using an in silico approach. The top drug candidates will then further be validated in cell-based in vitro experiments, as well as in in vivo tumor models.




Personal interests

I am a mountain enthusiast and enjoy spending my free time outdoors hiking, biking or skiing. I also like photography and traveling.


Curriculum Vitae Sonja Dorfer

Professional career

Since 2021
Postdoc at the EB House Austria

Biomedical Scientist at the Medical University of Vienna



PhD studies at the Medical University of Vienna
Subject of PhD thesis: “The role of papillomavirus infection in skin carcinogenesis”
Supervisor: Alessandra Handisurya

Master studies: Medical and Pharmaceutical Biotechnology at the IMC FH Krems.
Subject of master thesis: “Modification of bone resorption in vivo – Implications for the bone microenvironment”
Supervisor: Ingunn Holen

Bachelor studies: Biomedical Science at the FH Campus Vienna


Awards and Fellowships

2014 merit scholarship for Master studies Medical and Pharmaceutical Biotechnology


Additional qualifications

2017 Experimental Biomedical Studies in Animals (Cat. B FELASA), Medical University of Vienna

Original Articles

  1. Zauner R, Wimmer M, Dorfer S, Ablinger M, Koller U, Piñón Hofbauer J, Guttmann-Gruber C, Bauer JW, Wally V. Transcriptome-Guided Drug Repurposing for Aggressive SCCs. International journal of molecular sciences 2022;23:1007
  2. Riebenbauer K, Weber PB, Walochnik J, Karlhofer F, Winkler S, Dorfer S, Auer H, Valencak J, Laimer M, Handisurya A. Human dirofilariosis in Austria: the past, the present, the future. Parasit Vectors. 2021 Apr 29;14(1):227.
  3. Dorfer S, Strasser K, Schröckenfuchs G, Bonelli M, Bauer W, Kittler H, Cataisson C, Fischer MB, Lichtenberger BM, Handisurya A. Mus musculus papillomavirus 1 is a key driver of skin cancer development upon immunosuppression. Am J Transplant. 2021 Feb;21(2):525-539.
  4. Dorfer S, Strasser K, Reipert S, Fischer MB, Shafti-Keramat S, Bonelli M, Schröckenfuchs G, Bauer W, Kancz S, Müller L, Handisurya A. Deficiency of Cathelicidin-related Antimicrobial Peptide Promotes Skin Papillomatosis in Mus musculus Papillomavirus 1-infected Mice. Acta Derm Venereol. 2021 Jan 5;101(1):adv00367.
  5. Dorfer S, Kancz S, Birner P, Strasser K, Kirnbauer R, Petzelbauer P, Radakovic S, Harpain L, Pehamberger H, Thalhammer F, Handisurya A. High-risk Mucosal Human Papillomavirus Infection in Squamous Cell Carcinoma and Bowen's Disease of the Hand. Acta Derm Venereol. 2019 Apr 1;99(4):462-463.
  6. Dovjak P, Dorfer S, Föger-Samwald U, Kudlacek S, Marculescu R, Pietschmann P. Serum levels of sclerostin and dickkopf-1: effects of age, gender and fracture status. Gerontology. 2014;60(6):493-501.


  1. Dorfer S, Handisurya A. Model systems for papillomavirus-associated skin disease. Drug Discovery Today: Disease Models. 2020;32:7-16.


Back to main navigation