$4.4M Grant for Research

Fred Hutch Team Awarded $4.4M From the National Cancer Institute for Pioneering Immunogenic Cancer Research

Harnessing new technologies of high-throughput screening and large-scale public data mining to find new immunotherapy targets

Released: 8/5/2013 3:00 PM EDT
Source Newsroom: Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center

Newswise — SEATTLE – Scientists at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center have received $4.4 million over four years from the National Cancer Institute to pioneer an ambitious new way to harness the power of the adaptive immune system to control cancer.

The team, led by Martin McIntosh, Ph.D., head of the Computational Biology Program at Fred Hutch, is using high-throughput technology and emerging public data resources to help identify hundreds of proteins as possible immune targets and verify which ones might be immunogenic, i.e., capable of provoking an immune response in the body and therefore potentially useful in immune-based therapies.

A variety of molecular alterations in cancer cells may result in the expression of proteins that are unique to tumors. These proteins make attractive targets for a variety of therapeutic approaches because of their potential to be targeted without adversely affecting normal cells. McIntosh’s effort, however, is focused on using these proteins for therapies that will harness patients’ immune systems to control cancer.

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