Our scientific team performs cutting-edge laboratory research, spanning from the basic mechanisms governing the immune response, to translational studies using patient samples, to developing novel immune therapies. We investigate many facets of the immune response, from different cell types (e.g. T cells, macrophages, dendritic cells), to various immune-regulatory molecules (e.g. interleukin-10, PD-1, Notch). We study the immune response to cancer in blood cells, and also we evaluate the tumor microenvironment itself to understand the how the immune system functions within the tumor itself. Advanced genomic approaches are being coupled with our immunological know-how in order to uncover what new components of cancer cells that can be recognized by immune cells.
Our research includes the development of new therapies, for example, finding novel ways to modify T cells to improve their cancer-fighting activity, or novel ways to stimulate a patient’s own immune response against their cancer. We have already brought one of our discoveries from the laboratory “bench” to the “bedside”, in a first-in-human clinical trial using tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) for the treatment of ovarian cancer. We are also developing new technologies that can be used in the fight against cancer, such as better ways to track tumor-reactive T cells. It is our hope that our findings will accelerate progress towards improving the treatment of many different types of cancer.
In addition to scientific principal investigators, our team includes scientific associates, research associates, and research technicians. Our laboratories also provide a rigorous training ground for undergraduate- and graduate-level students, as well as post-doctoral researchers.