The premise that the immune system can control cancer is now well established. The success of checkpoint blockade and CAR T cell therapy, developed by the groundbreaking work of James Allison and Michel Sadelain at SKI and the innovative clinical trials led by Jedd Wolchok, Renier Brentjens, and others at MSK, catapulted this premise to the forefront of contemporary cancer therapy. Having played a major role in immuno-oncology (IO) over many decades, MSK continues to forge ahead in order to create new IO modalities. SKI is the host of an outstanding basic Immunology Program with world class investigators, whose work is relevant to, and explicitly focused on, immune-tumor and microbe-tumor interactions. Many other investigators throughout SKI and Memorial Hospital have research projects that touch on the immune-tumor interaction. The Center for Experimental Immuno-Oncology, the EIO Center, builds on these strengths, and will unite and expand the IO community at MSK.
The EIO Center is a cross-departmental and cross-disciplinary entity that is open to interested investigators from MH and SKI. The goals of the EIO Center are to:
- Identify and understand the immune pathways in the tumor that can be exploited for the next generation of immunotherapies.
- Develop and provide access to technological platforms that will enhance EIO research at MSK.
- Enhance interactions between basic experimental immuno-oncologists and the robust institutional programs in immunotherapeutics, including the recently established HOPP Immuno-Oncology Service.
- Organize, curate, maintain, and distribute a bank of matched tumor and blood-derived cell samples suitable for downstream immunologic assays for investigators to translate their basic findings to human tumor samples.