Degree course: 
Corso di Second cycle degree in BIOMEDICAL SCIENCES
Academic year when starting the degree: 
Academic year in which the course will be held: 
Course type: 
Supplementary compulsory subjects
First Semester
Standard lectures hours: 
Detail of lecture’s hours: 
Lesson (32 hours)

In order to attend profitably the lessons, the student should be endowed with basic notions in immunology

Final Examination: 

The final exam consists of an oral test.

Voto Finale

Immunology of cancer deals with the complex relationship between host immune response and the neoplastic disease. Recent advances in this field of research holds promise for fighting cancer. The principal goals of the course are a) to provide the student with a comprehensive knowledge of immunopathology and the underlying immune regulatory circuits b) to provide the student with an updated view of the role of chronic inflammation and acquired immunity in cancer and of recent immunotherapy approaches to manage advanced neoplastic disease. After the course the student should be endowed with a comprehensive knowledge of immunopathology and cancer immunology.

Immune regulatory circuits
-innate receptors, pathogen associated molecular patterns PAMP and PRR
-properties and functions of effector T cells
-conventional T helper cells, Th1, Th2 and Th17
-peripheral tolerance, second and third signal in antigen presentation
-regulatory T cells and IL-2
-damage associated molecular patterns DAMPs and sterile inflammation
-M1 and M2, gatekeeper of tissue homeostasis

Hypersensitivity and allergy
type I, II, III and IV

-autoimmunity represents a breakdown or failure of the mechanisms of self- tolerance
-epidemiology of autoimmune disorders
-classification of autoimmune diseases
-pathogenic mechanisms of autoimmune disorders
-genetic and environmental basis of autoimmunity
-example of autoimmune diseases
-therapy of autoimmune diseases

Mucosal immunity and gut microbiota
-functional anatomy of the gastrointestinal tract, a focus on immunity
-the cross-talk between gut microbiota and host physiology is best understood as a matter of developmental biology
-microbiota and cancer therapy

Tumor antigens
-immunosourvelliance theory statements and previsions
-experimental data supporting the theory in the murine model
-the theory applied in human oncology
-tumor antigens (tumor-specific or tumor-associated)
-discovery of tumor antigens
-generation of acquired responses against the cancer

immunotherapy of cancer
-cancer immunotherapy, general principles
-cancer vaccines
-adoptive cell transfer (ACT)
-immune checkpoints inhibitors
-CTLA-4 pathway in cancer immunotherapy
-PD-1 pathway in cancer immunotherapy
-chimeric antigen receptors CARs in cancer therapy
-future prospects: biomarkers and combination therapies

Cancer cachexia
-cancer cachexia, clinical definition
-mechanisms of cancer cachexia
-inflammation is regarded as the main driving force behind cancer cachexia
-molecular mediators of cancer cachexia
-cancer cachexia and muscle atrophy
-altered metabolism, atrophy/browning of adipose tissue and resting energy expenditure REE
-approaches to the therapy of cancer cachexia

immunopathology section:
Kuby Immunology W. H. Freeman and Company, New York
Kenneth Murphy, Casey Weaver Janeway’s immunobiology Garland Sciences

Immunology of cancer section:
Robert Weinberg The biology of cancer Garland Sciences
Reviews or original papers on the subject and lecture’s files provided by the teacher on the e-learning platform


The course consists of lectures (32 hours, 4 CFU).

Students may communicate with the teacher through the university E-mail address. The gathering place is the teacher’s study office in Busto Arsizio.