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30 Breakthroughs in Immunotherapy

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Discover CRI's impact on the development of today’s (and tomorrow’s) immunotherapy treatments with 30 scientific breakthroughs. Every day in June, we’re sharing a different advancement based on innovative, CRI-funded research, supporting our goal to harness our immune system’s power to control and potentially cure all types of cancers. Follow us on Twitter @CancerResearch #CIM18 for daily updates.   

30 Days of CRI Impact

Characterized natural anti-tumor immune responses in cancer patients

1976: Drs. Hiroshi Shiku, Herbert Oettgen, and Lloyd J. Old

Created an antibody that can detect p53 that’s been useful in studying this important tumor suppressor protein

1981: Drs. Wolfgang Dippold and Lloyd J. Old

Identified patient traits that could predict responses to checkpoint immunotherapy

2014: Dr. Antoni Ribas

Shed light on an important marker associated with T cells

1979: Drs. John Pesando and Stuart Schlossman

Revealed that the antitumor activity of antibodies depends upon the types of FcR receptors the antibodies bind to

2000: Drs. Terris Towers and Jeffrey Ravetch

Discovered how the immune system can create trillions of customized antibodies

1983: Dr. Susumu Tonegawa

Discovered and described the phenomenon of "cancer immunoediting"

2001: Drs Vijay Shankaran, Allen Bruce, Hiroki Ikeda, and Robert Schreiber

Identified and isolated the portion of the T cell receptor that binds to MHCII proteins

1987: Drs. Marcia Blackman and Philippa Marrack

Demonstrated that dendritic cells promote T cell growth and adaptive immune responses

1983: Drs. Jonathan Austyn and Ralph Steinman

Revealed how the β-catenin pathway enables melanoma to evade immune responses

2015: Drs. Stefani Spranger and Thomas Gajewski

Demonstrated that the CTLA-4 checkpoint pathway regulates immune responses against self-tissues

1995: Drs. Frank Borriello and Arlene Sharpe

Provided early proof that checkpoint immunotherapy unleashes T cells against mutated tumor antigens

2014: Drs. Matthew Gubin and Robert Schreiber

Revealed that targeting the PD-1 immune checkpoint restores the activity of “exhausted” T cells

2006: Drs. E. John Wherry, David Masopust, and Rafi Ahmed

Developed nanobodies that enabled them to monitor “killer” T cells and predict immunotherapy responses

2017: Drs. Mohammad Rashidian and Hidde Ploegh

Revealed that the CD40 pathway is required for adaptive immunity

2004: Drs. Kang Liu and Ralph Steinman

Identified mutations associated with resistance to checkpoint immunotherapy 

2016: Drs. Ton Schumacher, Roger Lo, and Antoni Ribas

Revealed that FOXP3 serves as the master molecular switch for regulatory T cell development

2003: Drs. Jason Fontenot and Alexander Rudensky

Showed that targeting macrophages can convert “cold” tumors into “hot” ones that the immune system attacks more vigorously

2018: Dr. Susan Kaech

Revealed a second “don’t eat me!” signal that cancer cells use to protect themselves from the immune system

2017: Drs. Roy Maute and Irving Weissman

Performed one of the first successful uses of adoptive T cell therapy with patient-derived immune cells in patients with melanoma

2002: Dr. Cassian Yee

Revealed that natural killer cells protect against tumor formation through the NKG2D pathway

2006: Drs. Yoshihiro Hayakawa and Mark Smyth

Showed that central memory T cells provide superior, persistent protection against disease

2003: Drs. E. John Wherry, David Masopust, and Rafi Ahmed

Showed that regional delivery of CAR T cells improves their activity against mesothelioma

2014: Dr. Michel Sadelain

Found that vaccines against NY-ESO-1 were associated with improved survival in patients with aggressive ovarian cancer

2017: Drs. Sacha Gnjatic and Kunle Odunsi

Revealed how certain bacterial components stimulate the immune system

1974: Dr. Edgar Lederer

Proved that next generation sequencing could be used to characterized tumor neoantigens

2012: Drs. Matthew Vesely and Robert Schreiber

Showed that intestinal bacteria direct the development of specialized immune cells

2008: Drs. Nicolas Manel and Dan Littman

Discovered that heat shock proteins carry tumor-associated antigens that help stimulate immune responses against cancer

1993 Dr. Pramod Srivastava

Revealed the potential benefits of immunotherapy prior to surgery in lung cancer patients

2018: CRI-SU2C Immunology Dream Team

Discovered that certain intestinal bacteria make checkpoint immunotherapy more effective in mice

2015 Drs. Leticia Corrales and Thomas Gajewski

*Immunotherapy results may vary from patient to patient.

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