Cancer immunotherapy is revolutionizing the treatment of many cancers. In particular, checkpoint inhibitors that block the immune system’s “brakes”—such as PD-1 and CTLA-4—are allowing many patients to experience long-term benefits and, in some cases, cure-like responses. Though there has been a great deal of success, not all patients respond to these current checkpoint immunotherapies because alternative brakes can shut down T cells, and tumors can evolve additional mechanisms to prevent immune-mediated elimination.
Therefore, to develop new immunotherapy drugs, Dr. Brown seeks to identify additional pathways that control the immune system's response to cancer. To do this, his team is employing a novel technology that enables rapid analysis of hundreds of genes at once in order to identify genes that control the immune system's others brakes and accelerators, which will help determine how cancers evade immune responses. As a first application of the platform, he is using it to find genes that are critical for enabling T cells to eliminate breast tumors. These studies, and the technology he’s developing, will greatly aid the development of new drugs to turn on the immune system and help it to eliminate cancers.
Projects and Grants
Development of a novel technology for cancer immunology target discovery
Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai | All Cancers | 2019
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