Improving immunotherapy in head and neck cancer

Full project name: Characterising the immunopeptidome to improve immunotherapy in head and neck cancer

Tag: New treatments

head and neck cancer research

Immunotherapy represents a revolutionary approach to treat cancer, but many human cancers are resistant to immunotherapy, for reasons poorly understood.

This project will use immunoproteomics to identify molecular markers of tumour cell sensitivity and resistance to killing by cytotoxic T cell, the effectors of anti-tumour immunity.

The resulting data will provide new information about HNC that will help in the development of new immunotherapies and provide patient classification to enable personalised therapy.

Miriam will focus the study to identify signatures in HPV and non HPV using clinical samples from patients treated within the Head and Neck unit at the Royal Marsden Hospital, using an established, ethics-approved protocol (CHIMERA), which allows sample collection from patients undergoing radiotherapy treatment in our centre.  Together these approaches will generate fundamental insights on head & neck cancer immune signalling and improve patient treatment. ​

Professor Kevin Harrington
head and neck cancer research

Project type:
PhD Studentship

Project Leader:
Prof Harrington and Dr J Choudhary

Miriam Melake

Commencement date:
January 2020

Length of project:
4 years

Funding provided:

Oracle Cancer Trust

The Institute of Cancer Research