Targeted Tumor Vaccines

Group Leader

 

Dr. med. Angel Cid-Arregui

+49 (0) 6221 423714

a.cid@dkfz.de

Adaptive and innate immunity research for cervical cancer immunotherapy

Our research is aimed at understanding adaptive and innate immune responses to HPV-associated malignancies and developing vaccine and tumor-targeting strategies useful to  treat cancer. To this end, we have focused on the design of vaccines based on the hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg-S) as chimeric fusion proteins carrying tumor-specific T cell epitopes and a domain that activates immune cells. We have mainly concentrated in viral epitopes present in HPV-associated cancers. However, we are using also this strategy to target tumor neoantigens derived from mutated Ras, Braf, p16ink4a and p53.

In addition, we are interested in understanding the pathophysiological significance of changes in circulating levels of cytokines during progression from cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN) to cervical cancer (CC). A cohort of patients diagnosed with different grades of CIN and CC patients, as well as a healthy control group are currently being recruited and analyzed. With this study we hope to find diagnostic and prognostic markers for CC.

Furthermore, we develop targeted drug delivery systems to facilitate the administration of chemotherapy drugs primarily to tumor cells, thereby minimizing side effects. Currently, we are approaching the targeting of nanoparticles to tumor cells and antigen presenting cells using various types of binding molecules.

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