Immuno Oncology

Understanding Immuno-Oncology

Immuno-oncology is a ground-breaking approach to cancer treatment that capitalizes on the body’s own natural defenses. The fundamental idea behind this approach is to stimulate a person’s immune system to recognize and eradicate cancer cells more effectively. By enhancing or altering the immune system’s abilities, we can transform it into a more potent weapon against cancer.

25 years of anti-cancer immunotherapy development at HCRI

Immunotherapy Research Highlights


    Phase I/II study of adoptive cell therapy using TCR-T engineered lymphocytes against cancers expressing NYESO1 antigen

  • CancerRNA

    Establishing and leading CANCERNA: EU-sponsored Consortium “Harnessing RNA processing for cancer immunotherapy

  • MoAb Discovery

    Developing a MoAb to target immune receptor SLAMF6 for cancer immunotherapy

  • CRISPER Gene Editing

    Discovery of new immune checkpoints via RNA splicing modulation, using splice-switching oligonucleotides and CRISPR gene editing

Types of Immunotherapies

There are several different types of immunotherapies, each functioning in unique ways and carrying distinct risks and benefits. Here at HCRI, we’re deeply involved in exploring and harnessing the potential of these different immunotherapeutic strategies

Monoclonal or Therapeutic Antibodies

Monoclonal antibodies are designed to attach to specific proteins on cancer cells. Once attached, they can either halt the growth of cancer cells, flag them for destruction by the immune system, or deliver radiation or chemotherapy directly to the cancer cells.

Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors

Immune checkpoint inhibitors work by blocking the proteins that prevent the immune system from attacking cancer cells. This unleashes the full potential of the immune system, enabling it to aggressively combat the disease.

Immune System Modulators

Immune system modulators enhance the body's immune response against cancer. They work by either boosting the overall immune response or by promoting specific actions of the immune system against cancer cells.


Cytokines are naturally occurring proteins that enhance the immune system's ability to respond to cancer. They stimulate the growth and activity of immune cells, boosting the body's ability to fight off cancer.

Cancer Vaccines

Unlike conventional vaccines that prevent diseases, cancer vaccines are typically used to treat existing cancers. These vaccines help the immune system recognize cancer cells and stimulate an immune response against them.

Adoptive Cell Therapy

In adoptive cell therapy, immune cells are taken from a patient's body, genetically modified or treated to enhance their ability to fight cancer, and then reintroduced into the patient's body. This is a highly personalized form of immunotherapy that can be tailored to each individual patient's needs.

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