Lawrence Fong, MD

Department of Medicine

Our lab focuses upon the interactions between dendritic cells (DC) and T cells in disease states such as cancer and autoimmunity. DC represent a set bone marrow-derived antigen presenting cells that are uniquely capable of initiating or modulating T cell immunity. By studying how difference types of DC repond to different stimuli (e.g., viruses, bacteria), we hope to understand how DC can coordinate difference immune outcomes in response to different pathogens and disease states.

We also develop approaches to exploit DC as a platform for antigen-specific immune modulation in vivo in both animal models and humans. We have shown that antigen loaded DC can serve as therapeutic vaccine in cancer patients. Moreover, in vivo expansion of CD8 T cells identified with MHC/peptide tetramers following vaccination can correlate with tumor responses. By identifying the dynamics of antigen specific T cells and their capacity to develop immunologic memory, we hope to develop improved strategies in tumor immunotherapy. Future work will also focus upon understanding how altered peptide ligands or altered forms of self-antigens can enhance the immune response to tumor-associated self-antigens.

Primary Thematic Area: 
Secondary Thematic Area: 
Cancer Biology & Cell Signaling
Research Summary: 
Immunobiology of Dendritic Cells in Disease



Systemic Immunity Is Required for Effective Cancer Immunotherapy.


Spitzer MH, Carmi Y, Reticker-Flynn NE, Kwek SS, Madhireddy D, Martins MM, Gherardini PF, Prestwood TR, Chabon J, Bendall SC, Fong L, Nolan GP, Engleman EG

T cell repertoire diversification is associated with immune related toxicities following CTLA-4 blockade in cancer patients.

Cancer research

Fong L, Oh DY, Cham J, Zhang L, Fong G, Kwek SS, Klinger M, Faham M

The Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer consensus statement on immunotherapy for the treatment of prostate carcinoma.

Journal for immunotherapy of cancer

McNeel DG, Bander NH, Beer TM, Drake CG, Fong L, Harrelson S, Kantoff PW, Madan RA, Oh WK, Peace DJ, Petrylak DP, Porterfield H, Sartor O, Shore ND, Slovin SF, Stein MN, Vieweg J, Gulley JL

Can Prostate Cancer Really Respond to Immunotherapy?

Journal of clinical oncology : official journal of the American Society of Clinical Oncology

Kim W, Fong L

Systemic GM-CSF Recruits Effector T Cells into the Tumor Microenvironment in Localized Prostate Cancer.

Cancer immunology research

Wei XX, Chan S, Kwek S, Lewis J, Dao V, Zhang L, Cooperberg MR, Ryan CJ, Lin AM, Friedlander TW, Rini B, Kane C, Simko JP, Carroll PR, Small EJ, Fong L