Juan R. Cubillos-Ruiz, Ph.D., Wade F.B. Thompson CLIP InvestigatorWeill Cornell Medicine

Harnessing the natural ability of our immune system to eliminate malignant cells is the most promising anti-cancer strategy since the development of chemotherapy.
Area of Research: Ovarian Cancer

Ovarian tumors maintain environments that cripple anti-cancer immune responses.  Dr. Cubillos-Ruiz is characterizing how Endoplasmic Reticulum (ER) stress and bioactive lipids in the tumor microenvironment cooperate to cause severe immune cell dysfunction in ovarian cancer patients. Sustained ER stress and the accumulation of immunosuppressive lipids called lysophospholitic acids (LPA) occur in many ovarian tumors, can fuel tumor growth, and disrupt anti-tumor immune cells. Dr. Cubillos-Ruiz’s group is defining how these lipids manipulate dendritic cells (DCs) within the tumor. Additionally, his lab seeks to determine how blocking the interactions between these lipids and DCs influences anti-tumor immune responses, both alone and in combination with immunotherapies such as checkpoint inhibition and adoptive cell transfer. Hopefully, this will contribute to the development of more effective immunotherapeutic approaches that could improve survival for ovarian cancer patients.

Projects and Grants

Targeting LPA Sensors in the Tumor Microenvironment to Enhance Ovarian Cancer Immunotherapies

Weill Cornell Medicine | Ovarian Cancer | 2016

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