Determine the mechanisms of tumor resistance to immunotherapies, identify predicative biomarkers of therapeutic response in primary and metastatic NSCLCs, and discover novel therapeutic targets to prevent tumor recurrence and augment the efficacy of immunotherapies. Development of novel immunotherapy-based strategies for resectable NSCLC; tumor metabolism role on T cell-mediated antitumor immunity; nonsense-mediated mRNA decay (NMD) as therapeutic target to augment antitumor immunity.
Using both human samples and mouse models of NSCLC, our research focuses on understanding how perioperative therapies, including immune checkpoint inhibitors, modulate the immune microenvironment in primary and metastatic NSCLCs. We aim to determine the evolutionary transcriptomic and immune repertoire changes following perioperative therapies for biomarker discovery and identification of novel targets to be tested in clinical trials. Using murine models of spontaneously metastatic NSCLC, we have identified the superior efficacy of neoadjuvant immunotherapy as compared to adjuvant therapy in prolonging survival and reducing metastases via an increased and sustained immune response. We have identified tumor glycolysis as a pathway associated with poor T cell infiltration of early-stage NSCLC and melanomas, and with resistance to adoptive T cell therapy. We are investigating how radiographic tumor glucose uptake may predict therapeutic response in different stages of NSCLC. Using shRNA gene silencing and novel pharmacological inhibitors, we have demonstrated that NMD is a natural immune suppressive mechanism in NSCLC and a target to increase the antitumor immune response.
|2012||School of Medicine and Surgery, Second University of Naples (SUN), Naples, ITA, PHD, “Medical and Surgical Oncology and Clinical Immunology”. Department of Internal and Experimental Medicine|
|2004||School of Medicine and Surgery, Second University of Naples, Naples, ITA, MD, Clinical Medicine|
|2014-2017||Clinical Fellowship, Medical Oncology, Division of Cancer Medicine, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX|
|2012-2014||Clinical Residency, Internal Medicine, Physician Scientist Training Program, Barnes-Jewish Hospital, Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis, MO|
|2007-2012||Research Fellowship, Thoracic/ Head and Neck Medical Oncology, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX|
|2004-2008||Clinical Residency, Sub Specialty in Oncology, School of Medicine and Surgery, Second University of Naples (SUN), Naples|
|2017||American Board Internal Medicine, Medical Oncology|
|2015||American Board Internal Medicine, Internal Medicine|
|2011||Educational Commission for Foreigner Medical Graduates (ECFMG) Certification|
|2005||Italian Board of Medicine|
- Cascone T. “A role for stromal EGFR activation in resistance to VEGF blockade in human non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) xenograft models”. AACR 100th Annual Meeting, 2009.