The ITN TIMCC brings together nine expert teams from different disciplines within Immunology, Genetics and Oncology, to provide substantive and methodological training in the analysis of the role of the Tumor Infiltrating Myeloid Cell Compartment (TIMCC) of the innate immune system. Leukocytes recruited to (pre)malignant tissues are mainly myeloid cells. They can either prevent or functionally contribute to cancer development. However, the mechanisms underlying pro- versus anti-tumor programming of neoplastic tissues by these immune cells remain obscure.
The ITN TIMCC aims to improve anti-tumor therapy by defining general and tumor type specific molecular and cellular immunological pathways (e.g signal transduction and downstream effector pathways) in tumor development and during therapeutic intervention based on an extensive analysis of the infiltrating myeloid cell compartment in human tumor biopsies using a large variety of techniques and functional analysis of the corresponding models of a variety of human tumors, affecting different organs, in a unique cohort of genetically modified mice treated with different types of anti-tumor therapy.
The program will train the appointed researchers in a variety of methodology and technology from genomic technologies and bioinformatics via genetically modified mice to the design and application of therapeutic strategies to understand and manipulate the many interactions of the myeloid cell compartment with developing tumors. By defining underlying molecular and cellular pathways new targets will be identified to be explored by the participating SMEs. The program will deliver young researchers equipped with a broad knowledge in Immunology, Genetics and Oncology and insight in the complexity of translational medicine therefore better prepared to meet new challenges in the field.