RNA Splicing Regulations of Immune Response in Triple Negative Breast Cancer

Alternative splicing (AS) is a natural process which greatly contributes to the diversity of the human proteome, causing a single mRNA transcript to be spliced in various ways to generate functionally unique and diverse proteins. Aberrant changes in the AS program, however, have been shown to contribute to oncogenic processes, promoting tumor development and progression. One such central oncogenic process is immune evasion, in which tumor cells are able to avoid detection and attack by the immune system, allowing tumor cells to persist.
We have identified changes in the splicing program in TNBC which promote immune evasion and decrease survival. Our current work aims to further characterize and therapeutically modulate these changes to enhance the immune response, and thereby the efficacy of immunotherapy. Identification of distinct splicing profiles in TNBC may further improve treatment of TNBC by stratifying patients based on predicted response to therapy.
Research Scientist smiling looking at samples