Kristin studies properties of T cell migration and tumor microenvironments that impact the utility of adoptive T cell therapy for solid tumors, with a focus on ovarian cancer. Chemotherapy, immune checkpoint blockade, cell depletion techniques, and abrogation of other negative T cell regulators are being tested as strategies that might enhance adoptive T cell immunotherapy efficacy.
Shannon has identified several obstacles that inhibit immune cells from effectively eradicating tumor and she is inventing new ways to engineer T cells to overcome these obstacles and improve immunotherapy of hematological and solid tumors.
Rachel is expanding the cloned, high affinity, WT1-specific TCR repertoire to include several different HLA specificities as well as developing TCRs specific for the cancer testes antigen, cyclin A1. She is using bioinformatics screens, in vitro cell line testing and in vivo toxicity studies in HLA-transgenic mice to select optimal TCRs to translate into T cell therapy clinical trials for the treatment of pediatric and adult AML, as well as other cancers.
Tom is generating and optimizing expression vectors encoding high affinity WTI-specific TCR genes for use in T cell therapy trials. He is also developing novel methods for the directed evolution of tumor specific TCRs in vitro.
Leah is a new fellow who will be using autochthonous mouse models of cancer to test strategies for improving the efficacy of adoptive immunotherapies.