Co-Mentor: Matthew Niederst, PhD
Cambridge, Massachusetts, United States
Chimeric Antigen Receptor T-cell (CART) therapies have had tremendous success in the treatment of hematological malignancies and have truly transformed the lives of patients around the world. Despite the great success, a number of patients fail to respond to these therapies due to intrinsic tumor resistance, antigen escape or CART exhaustion. My team is focused in understanding the biology of hematological tumors, their genetic and phenotypical makeup and their correlation with susceptibility to CART killing. We study the biological basis behind primary and/or acquired resistance to CART by careful evaluation of tumor and CART biology. We have developed a number of in vitro tools and in vivo models that have enabled innovative studies to unravel the mechanisms behind resistance to CART. Our ultimate goal is to understand the complex network of interactions and pathways that lead to CART resistance and design therapeutic alternatives to improve CART response.