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The tumour microenvironment in non-small cell lung cancer.

Research interests

The tumour is composed of much more than tumour cells, and these infiltrating immune and stromal cell cells are manipulated by the cancer to avoid immune rejection. This tumour microenvironment (TME) has a very important role in determining response to treatment. Using state-of-the art technologies Van Maldegem aims to enhance our understanding of the interplay between the tumour cells and the TME. Imaging Mass Cytometry enables the simultaneous staining of almost 40 markers in a tissue section, thereby providing a detailed characterisation of the many different cells in the TME, while at the same time revealing the spatial patterns in which the cells are arranged within the tissue and in relation to eachother (cellular communities).

In order to understand how we can manipulate the TME to benefit therapeutic strategies, we will first need to better understand the dynamics within this complex system. How does the TME evolve over time during tumour development, and what are the selective forces that drive this evolution? How do the cellular communities change when we intervene, for example with an immunotherapy, or conventional therapies such as radiotherapy? By addressing these questions using in vitro, in vivo and translational work, Van Maldegem aims to (1) establish biomarkers based on TME profiles predicting response to therapy, (2) identify novel therapeutic targets, and (3) rationalise therapeutic combinations to optimally harness anti-tumour immunity.

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being

Education/Academic qualification

PhD, Immunoglobulin gene alterations in normal and neoplastic B cells, Academic Medical Centre (AMC)

1 Mar 200419 Nov 2009

Award Date: 19 Nov 2009


  • RC0254 Neoplasms. Tumors. Oncology (including Cancer)
  • Imaging
  • translational research
  • Tumour Immunology
  • Lung cancer

Collaborations and top research areas from the last five years

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