Funding for a project focussed on the response to immunotherapy for the treatment of colorectal cancer

- Research

This year the Fundación Mutua Madrileña has allocated 2.3 million euros for financing medical research in Spain. Four of the 21 clinical studies benefiting are projects being carried out in Catalan research centres, which will receive a total of 540,000 euros. One of these is being led by the Germans Trias I Pujol Research Institute (IGTP) and coordinated between four groups of the Programme for Predictive and Personalized Medicine of Cancer (IGTP-PMPPC).

The project is coordinated by Sergio Alonso and involves four groups from the IGTP, the Catalan Institute of Oncology (ICO) and the Germans Trias i Pujol Hospital; together these groups have expertise in basic, translational and clinical research into colorectal cancer. One of the clinical objectives is to increase the number of patients who can benefit from immunotherapy. The group will study the molecular mechanisms that determine lymphocytic infiltration with a view to developing combined therapies. In particular the project will study the relationship between remodelling of the extracellular matrix with lymphocytic infiltration and explore their use as predictive biomarkers, or as future therapeutic targets to improve the response to immunotherapy for colorectal cancer. "Our project includes the fundamental biology of tumours, which could open the door to new clinical trials to provide new evidence to help select patients and treatments based on immunotherapy," explains Alonso, principal investigator of the project.

The four participating groups are: the Genetics and Epigenetics of Cancer Group (S Alonso, IGTP); the Epigenetic Mechanisms of Cell Differentiation and Cancer Group (MA Peinado, IGTP); the Resistance, Chemotherapy and Predictive Biomarkers Group (E Martínez-Balibrea, IGTP and the ProCURE Programme of the ICO) and the Badalona Applied Research Group in Oncology (B·ARGO), (A Martínez-Cardús, IGTP and ICO Badalona).