Grants - Washington - Designated Grants - 2015

Harlan Robbins, Ph.D. & Miriam Gutschow, Ph.D.

Funded in Collaboration With

Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C)

The last two decades have seen the development of increasingly effective cancer therapies that target different facets of transformed cells, including aberrant proliferation/survival, immune evasion, hyper-activated signaling pathways and dysregulated transcriptional programs. In a subset of cancers, including acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and non-small cell lung cancer with activating EGFR mutations, these therapies lead to dramatic clinical responses in a significant proportion of patients.

However, in the majority of AML and EGFR mutant lung cancer patients who respond to anti-cancer therapies, therapeutic relapse subsequently ensues, although often after a considerable interval, such that these responses do not lead to long-term cures. Often the relapsed tumors are infiltrated by adaptive immune cells (T cells). With the advances in immunotherapy, which utilize a patient’s own immune system to fight the cancer, it is possible to treat with immunotherapy after relapse. We are studying the T cell infiltrates before, during, and after relapse in both AML and NSCLC patients to determine if the response if the relapsed tumors have the characteristics of an immunogenic tum.