We focus on contributing to the development of new and the improvement of existing therapeutics in oncology and immunology. Therefore, we employ diverse imaging approaches that span multiple lengths scales ranging from whole-body to microscopic levels.

Recent work on non-invasive spatiotemporal CAR-T tracking that revealed therapy retention differences between different triple-negative breast cancer models.

One focus area are advanced cell therapies, which hold great promise for treating cancer and are emerging concepts to treat other conditions (e.g. solid organ transplantation, tissue regeneration). To unleash their full potential, we aim to provide a better understanding of the mechanisms governing cell therapy in vivo distribution, efficacy, fate and potential adverse side effects. Therefore, we develop and employ non-invasive in vivo imaging, which we have used to visualize and track adoptive T cell immunotherapies (e.g. CAR-T, γδ T, and regulatory T cells) and stem cell-derived therapies.

Another focus area is to employ in vivo traceable cancer models to gain a better insight into the molecular processes underlying cancer progression and cancer cell spread (metastasis). These models are also suitable to study the effects of new and experimental treatments on aforementioned processes. We have already employed these models to investigate the effects of chemotherapies and immunotherapies on tumour growth and metastasis and have recently suggested a preclinical pipeline approach for the identification and validation of new drugs intended to interfere with melanoma cell spread.

PET/CT image of a mouse with in vivo traceable triple negative breast cancer; the cancer had spread from the primary tumour to lung and lymph nodes. Cancer spread and burden can be quantified by in vivo cell tracking. More…

Want to Learn about Cell Tracking?

If you are interested in the basics of cell tracking, then please have a look at this Educational WMIS webinar I recently held with my colleague Dr. Vladimir Ponomarev (MSKCC, NY, U.S.): Nuclear Imaging of Cell-based Therapeutics. And if you prefer reading or want more details, then please have a look at our latest comprehensive reviews in Molecular Therapy and Frontiers in Physiology (open access).

If you are interested in how to approach in vivo cell tracking in practice, for example how to track cell-based immunotherapies or cancer cell metastasis, then please check out our video and protocol in JoVE (open access).

Radionuclide-fluorescence Reporter Gene Imaging to Track Tumor Progression in Rodent Tumor Models

As members of ESMI and WMIS, we are glad to not only benefit from but also very happy to contribute to these fantastic imaging communities. Invited by WMIS, we have recently helped filming an educational movie explaining the role of imaging in immunotherapies to promote the new Imaging in Cell and Immune Therapies Interest Group. Watch out for Alessia, Ewelina and Lindsay all featuring there.

And of course you are very welcome to discuss opportunities to work with us in these or associated arenas; please drop us a note using this contact form.