Immunotherapy to treat aggressive colorectal tumors


A team led by Eduard Batlle, ICREA researcher from the Institute for Research in Biomedicine (IRB Barcelona), with the participation of the team led by the professor from the Department of Inorganic and Organic Chemistry Antoni Riera, also member of the institute, determined the efficiency of treatments to boost the immune system against colorectal cancer if combined with a TFG-beta protein neutralizer.

Researchers worked on a mouse model that imitates advanced human colorectal cancer, which enabled them to study the behaviour of the immune system for the first time. The study, published in the journal Nature, confirms that the TGF-beta hormone is the reason why the immune system does not notice colorectal tumor cells. The drugs to neutralize the action of TGF-beta, synthetized in the laboratory of chemistry of professor Riera, infiltrate and notice the tumor, fight the cancer and can even prevent the apparition of metastasis that are created in the liver and lungs due tumors that develop in the colon in a preclinical mouse model that imitates the disease in humans.
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Article reference

D. V. F. Tauriello, S. Palomo-Ponce, D. Stork, A. Berenguer-Llergo, J. Badia-Ramentol, M. Iglesias, M. Sevillano, S. Ibiza, A. Cañellas, X. Hernando-Momblona, D. Byrom, J. A. Matarin, A. Calon, E. I. Rivas, A. R. Nebreda, A. Riera, C. Stephan-Otto Attolini i E. Batlle. “TGF-beta drives immune evasion in genetically reconstituted colon cancer metastasis”Nature, February 2018. DOI: 10.1038/nature25492


Universitat de Barcelona