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NEW opportunity: PHD student INPhINIT Fellowships Programme – Incoming. Call for applications 2021

Breast cancer metastasis immunoedditing and immunotherapy| IMIM – Institut Hospital del Mar d’Investigacions Mèdiques

Our lab has one slot available for applications to this competitive fellowships

Breast cancer contains subpopulations of aggressive cancer stem-like cells (CSCs) responsible for initiating tumor growth, metastasis, and relapse after therapy. By activating stem cell-like programs, breast cancer cells acquire properties similar to those of normal mammary stem cells (MaSCs). We have recently revealed that MaSCs and CSCs have a deficient response to interferon signalling, which suggests that these populations might interact differently with the immune system. Hence, the project aims to characterize the consequence of low IFN response in metastatic CSCs, also called metastatic stem cells (MetSCs) and its implications in immunotherapy of triple-negative breast cancer metastasis. The research plan is designed to determine the dynamic evolution of MetSCs-immune interactions during metastasis. Experimental models of mouse spontaneous breast cancer, isogenic metastatic cell lines, patient-derived xenografts, and patient clinical samples will be used to decipher MetSC and immune interactions in vitro, in vivo, and ex-vivo. Despite the widely known aggressiveness of CSCs – including MetSCs – no specific inhibitors are effective against this population; therefore, better understanding of their biology will offer innovative new therapeutic opportunities using immunotherapy.

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Celià-Terrassa Lab

The Celià-Terrassa’s Lab started in January 2018 and focuses on understanding the complexity and dynamics of metastasis, in particular the molecular mechanisms regulating breast cancer stem cells (bCSCs) and their interplay with the metastatic niche. We are interested on studying the molecular mechanisms underlying Cancer Stem Cell (CSC) cellular plasticity leading tumor progression, chemorresistance and relapse, as a major challenge to efficiently target breast cancer metastasis.