Metastases and Immunotherapy: understanding treatment failure to promote success

Assistant Professor of Computational Biology, Scott Carter, along with his team Alex Shalek and Priscilla Brastiano of MIT, recently received funding from the Bridge Project for their work to characterize acquired resistance to immunotherapy by studying intracranial and extracranial metastases.

Using cutting-edge methodologies, including newly pioneered single cell RNA-seq methods, the team will conduct detailed molecular correlative studies of brain metastases and leptomeningeal carcinomatosis at the genomic and immune micro-environmental levels before, during, and post-relapse immunotherapy, to uncover pathogenic mechanisms within subpopulations of cancer and immune cells with immediate therapeutic potential.

The team’s innovative approach reflects the mission of the Bridge Project, a collaboration between the Koch Institute and Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center (DF/HCC), which fosters interdisciplinary studies that wed new tools and methods from the engineering-based disciplines with advances in cancer biology and the translational expertise of clinical oncologists, to solve today’s most challenging problems in cancer research and care.