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Adoptive therapy with T cell receptor (TCR)-engineered T cells has demonstrated objective responses in multiple types of tumors, including hard-to-treat solid tumors. To further advance adoptive T cell therapy, it is imperative to counteract deficits in immune control, such as limited entrance into tumor tissue, recognition of target antigens and/or effector functions of T cells, that ultimately give way to tumor recurrence. In certain tumors, such shortcomings in local CD8 T cell immunity are a consequence of an intra-tumoral abundance of immune suppressive myeloid cells.
In our laboratory, we have designed and tested engineering strategies to make T cells resistant against local immune suppression. In this project, we welcome you as a PhD candidate to extend such strategies to make T cells resist immune suppressive actions of myeloid cells. To this end, you will make use of advanced in vitro co-culture systems with T cells and myeloid cell subsets, as well as the CRIPR-Cas technology to find candidates for T cell engineering. Subsequently, these new T cell engineering is tested in vivo, and translated into a system that becomes 'switched-on' in the tumor tissue. This project will start in breast cancer models, but will be extended to models of multiple tumor types.
The outcomes are expected to impact adoptive T cell therapy and not only enable targeting of tumor antigens, but also provide resistance in a controlled manner to the immune evasive nature of tumors.
Erasmus MC (University Medical Center Rotterdam)
- You have obtained your Msc degree in the field of immunology, preferably T cell immunology.
- You are highly enthousiastic to perform research, take initiatives, communicate easily (in English or Dutch) and cooperate in a team of researchers.
- Your look forward to write manuscripts and present data.
Conditions of employment
We offer a temporary position for 4 years. The gross monthly salary amounts to a maximum of € 3.196,- (scale OIO), based on a full-time working week of 36 hours. The terms of employment are in accordance with the Collective Bargaining Agreement for University Medical Centers (CAO UMC).
A healthy population and excellence in healthcare through research and education. This is what Erasmus MC stands for. Conducting groundbreaking work, pushing boundaries and leading the way in research, education, and healthcare.
The Department of Medical Oncology has a long-standing tradition in clinical and translational cancer research. Research at the laboratory of Tumor Immunology (Division of Translational Onco-Immunology) is involved in the following activities towards new or ongoing patient studies: development and implementation of adoptive T cell treatment; understanding and intervening with cross-talk between tumor cells and micro-environment; and immune monitoring of T cell phenotype and function in patient cohorts.