The Prasad Adusumilli Lab: Research Overview

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Research led by Prasad S. Adusumilli focuses on investigation of the tumor immune microenvironment and the development of T-cell‒mediated immunotherapy for thoracic malignancies and pleural-based diseases. His team has championed regional immunotherapy delivery strategies, resulting in translation of mesothelin-targeted CAR T-cell immunotherapy for malignant pleural mesothelioma, lung, and breast cancers.

Pictured: Image from the cover of Journal of Clinical Investigation, August 2016

Work from Dr. Adusumilli’s lab has led to convincing data showing that T cells function efficiently when targeted to the tumor microenvironment. The strength of his approach is the ability to noninvasively track, monitor, and measure pleural tumor burden and T-cell trafficking to better understand the biology of lung cancers and the efficacy of novel treatments.

Dr. Adusumilli’s goal is to transition his work toward advancing adoptive T-cell therapy via regional immune interventions and investigate this treatment in clinical trials.

Current areas of investigation include:

  • T-cell therapy for mesothelioma, lung, and breast cancer for translation to clinical trials
  • Genetic strategies to enhance T-cell function and overcome solid tumor‒mediated immunosuppression
  • Noninvasive tumor and T-cell bioluminescent imaging to characterize trafficking of T-cell subsets
  • Further investigate the solid tumor microenvironment to identify novel cancer antigen targets for adoptive T-cell therapy
  • Molecular characterization of lung adenocarcinoma morphological subtypes

Dr. Adusumilli trained as a research fellow at Memorial Sloan Kettering and subsequently completed his thoracic surgery training at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. He then returned to Memorial Sloan Kettering in 2007, after being specifically recruited to bolster the thoracic surgery translational research program within the Department of Surgery.

Laboratory Research Funding

  • National Cancer Institute R01 Image-Guided Drug Delivery Award
  • National Cancer Institute R01 Investigator-Initiated Early Phase Clinical Trials for Cancer Treatment and Diagnosis Award
  • Department of Defense (DoD) Breast Cancer Breakthrough Award
  • Department of Defense (DoD) Investigator-Initiated Translational Research Award
  • Department of Defense (DoD) Peer Reviewed Cancer Review Program (PRCRP) Idea Award
  • Department of Defense (DoD) Translational Team Science Award
  • Druckenmiller Center for Lung Cancer Research Award
  • Emerson Collective Cancer Research Award
  • MSK Comedy vs Cancer Award
  • MSK Experimental Therapeutics Drug Discovery and Development Award
  • MSK Technology Development Award