German Cancer Research Center – DKFZ
Deutsches Krebsforschungszentrum (DKFZ) / German Cancer Research Center
Project: “Targeting of activated NK and T cells to tumour vasculature by glycan-modulated antibody conjugates”
Anna Chiara Pirona
Former DKFZ Fellow
Our group combines two approaches of applied tumor immunology:
- We investigate modified glycosylation patterns of tumor cell surface molecules for novel diagnostic and therapeutic strategies. Also protein-glycan interactions play a vital role for the cross-talk between tumor cells and their microenvironment. During homing of tumor cells to vascular endothelium as part of the metastasizing process distinct glycans mediate contacts to lectins on the opposing cells.
- Activated T and NK (natural killer) lymphocytes have the potential to lethally attack tumor cells. Taking advantage of modern antibody production technology we will build specific antibody constructs against surface glycoproteins of these lymphocytes covalently linked to defined oligosaccharides as ligands for lectins on the vascular endothelial side. These antibody-oligosaccharide constructs shall guide armed lymphocytes to vascular endothelium in close vicinity of the tumor-infiltrated tissue in order to actively destroy the tumor cells after having passed the vessel wall.