Lung cancers are the leading cause of cancer related deaths in Australia, with a 5-year survival of 15%. With the emerging success of immune checkpoint blockage leading to durable responses and prolonged survival in 15-40% of cases, there is now a need for predictive biomarkers to guide selection for immunotherapies.
The immune contexture of the tumour microenvironment (TME) is an important factor in dictating how well a tumour may respond to immune checkpoint therapies (1). Spatial and immunological composition with cellular status can aid in identifying micro-niches within the TME. This project aims to spatially map tumours using digital spatial profiling technology (1,2) (NanoString GeoMX DSP and Multiplex-IHC) to understand the tumour-immune cell interactions at play.
- Describe the spatial immune contexture in non-small-cell lung cancer
- Identify spatial biomarkers associated with disease outcome.
- Wargo et al., Nature Medicine 2018;
- Rimm et al., Clinical Cancer Research 2019, 2020.
Approaches/Skills and techniques
- Multiplex immunohistochemistry
- Cell sorting (FACS)
- Microscopy (Inverted, confocal, high resolution)
- Spatial/geometric mapping of cells
The findings will spatially describe the tumour microenvironment in lung cancer to identify biomarkers associated with disease outcome. These findings will represent a novel means by which to identify whether a specific therapy would be effective from diagnostic tissue biopsy. Ultimately leading to a more personalised treatment for lung cancer patients.
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