Marie Curie Post Doc position in Centre for Genomics and Oncological Research (GENYO): Expression...

June 07 2016
Position Type
Full Time
Marie Curie Post Doc position at the center for Genomics and Oncological Research (GENYO) (Granada, Spain)

GENYO focuses on the study and understanding of the genetic basis of human diseases in general, placing special emphasis on cancer and its genetic disorders related to inheritance. This centre is the benchmark centre of the Andalusian Program for Research in Clinical Genetics and Genomic Medicine, a program which, together with those of Cell Therapy and Regenerative Medicine, and Nanomedicine have the main objective of supporting and fostering translational research in Advanced Therapies (

Description of the group: Per Anderson (principal investigator), Ana Belén Carrillo-Gálvez (Ph.D student), Elena Fernández-Sierra (final year university student), Alejandro Fernández-Santos (student).

Description of the projects

Project 1 Objective: The study of mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) for the treatment of autoimmune/inflammatory diseases: MSCs are non-hematopoietic, perivascular cells which can be obtained from virtually all tissues and organs of the body. In vitro-expanded MSCs possess potent immunomodulatory and tissue regenerative properties. Various phase I/II and III clinical trials for autoimmune/inflammatory diseases have shown that administration of MSCs is safe but their capacity to ameliorate disease remains poor. In order to improve MSC-based therapies for inflammatory/autoimmune diseases, we aim to (i) phenotypically and functionally characterize MSC preparations, (ii) analyze how MSCs modulate the immune system in vitro and in vivo and design strategies that increase the immunomodulatory potential of MSCs.

Project 2 Objective: The role of MSCs and Glycoprotein A repetitions predominant (GARP) in cancer: Tumor progression is not a cell autonomous process but involves multiple cells types present in the tumor microenvironment. MSCs are recruited to the tumor niche and can either promote or inhibit tumor growth and invasiveness. How MSCs interact with cancer cells and other cells in the tumor microenvironment is not fully understood. We have recently found that MSCs express glycoprotein A repetitions predominant (GARP) protein which binds transforming growth factor (TGF)-β1 to their surface. In addition, other cells present in the tumor niche, including regulatory T cells, endothelial cells and tumor cells have been reported to express GARP but its role in cancer has not yet been studied. The aims of the project are to analyze the role of GARP in (i) the reciprocal communication between MSCs and cancer cells; (ii) endothelial and mesenchymal stromal cell differentiation and function and (iii) the influence of GARP on tumor cell growth and invasiveness. We envision GARP as a promising therapeutic target in cancer due to its presence on key cells in the tumor microenvironment and due to its direct involvement in modulating

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