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Predicting ovarian cancer survival through tumor-attacking immune cells
Date:12/4/2013

uthor Harlan S. Robins, Ph.D., a computational biologist and associate member of the Public Health Sciences and Human Biology divisions at Fred Hutch. They devised a way to easily screen T cells by capturing the genetic information of unique proteins these cells carry on their surface. Fred Hutch licensed the technology to Adaptive Biotechnologies, a company Robins co-founded.

In the present study, Robins, Bielas and colleagues tested this novel technique, called "QuanTILfy," on tumor samples from 30 ovarian cancer patients with known survival outcomes ranging from one to 22 months. They looked at the levels of TILs in their tumors and compared those levels to the women's survival. They found that higher TIL numbers correlated with better survival. For example, the percentage of TILs was approximately threefold higher on average for patients with a survival rate of more than five years as compared to patients with a survival rate of less than two years.

"Now that we have the sensitivity and ability to reproducibly count TILs in tumors, we may be able to stratify and more effectively treat patients based on tumor TIL count," Bielas said.


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Contact: Kristen Woodward
media@fredhutch.org
206-667-2210
Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
Source:Eurekalert

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