Molecular and Cellular Therapy

The main goal of the ongoing research activities at the laboratory of Molecular and Cellular Therapy (LMCT) is to develop an integrated partnership between immunotherapy and conventional cancer treatment. Innovative immuno-modulatory and immuno-therapeutic strategies are being tested in preclinical models and translated towards clinical applications in phase I/II trials.

 

Research topics – projects

  • Messenger RNA based immunotherapy of melanoma
  • Harnessing immunity to cancer stem cell antigens
  • Comprehensive biomarker profiling of the tumor microenvironment and the immune response during immunotherapy
  • Multitargeted therapy: development of novel therapeutic combination for augmenting the potency of cancer vaccines.
  • Preclinical and clinical studies to investigate the role of SOX2 as a potential target to induce cellular immune responses against myeloma cells.
  • Study of the tumor microenvironment to develop predictive in silico models of personalized immunotherapy.
  • Characterization of spontaneous and vaccine-induced immune responses against melanoma, and analysis of their influence on the clinical course of the patients.
  • Role of immunomodulatory drugs in enhancing the efficacy of an anti-myeloma vaccination strategy
  • Enhancing tumor immunity by intranodal injection of mRNA encoding tumor antigens and activation stimuli
  • Manipulation of the immune system using targeted lentiviral vectors
  • Inhibitory mechanisms exerted by melanoma cells and their environment
  • Relationship between persistent STAT3 activation and myeloid derived suppressor cell-mediated immune suppression in melanoma
  • Dendritic cell therapy in myeloma patients 

 

 Clinical trials

  • A phase II study of TriMix-DC in combo with Ipilimumab in Patients  with unresectable Stage III or IV melanoma
  • A Randomized phase II clinical trial on mRNA electroporated autologous dendritic cells  for stage III/IV melanoma in patients who are free from measurable tumor lesions  following the local treatment of macro metastases

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