Researchers from Winship Cancer Institute of Emory University will chair sessions, receive awards and present groundbreaking work in immune-based cancer treatments and techniques at the 38th annual meeting of the Society for Immunotherapy of Cancer (SITC) in San Diego, Nov. 1-5, 2023.
Established in 1984, SITC is a nonprofit organization of medical professionals dedicated to improving cancer outcomes by advancing the development, science and application of cancer immunotherapy and tumor immunology. Its annual meeting is the world’s largest conference focused solely on this field.
Faculty presentations from Winship’s Cancer Immunology Research Program include a podium talk by Rafi Ahmed, PhD, "PD-1 and IL-2; T Cell Exhaustion"; a session on "Diversity in Patient Populations" co-chaired by Kavita Dhodapkar, MBBS; and a rapid oral abstract by Jessica Konen, PhD, "Targeting autotaxin enhances immune checkpoint blockade response in NSCLC."
Kelsey Bennion, a doctoral student in Emory's Cancer Biology Graduate Program, received a SITC Young Investigator Award for her first-author abstract, "Making their own off switch: Fgl2 produced by antigen-specific CD8+ T cells tempers the CD8+ T-cell response via apoptosis of FcγRIIB+ CD8+ T cell." Co-authors of the abstract include her faculty advisors, Mandy L. Ford, PhD, and Chrystal M. Paulos, PhD, both Winship members. As one of four Young Investigator Award winners selected for the Presidential Travel Award, Bennion will present her research during the Presidential Session.
Paulos, who serves as an at-large director of the SITC Board of Directors, is the recipient of the 2023 Connect-A-Colleague Award for making the most introductions that resulted in collaborations.
SITC's pre-conference program on Nov. 1-2 includes a grant writing workshop, educational sessions and other professional development opportunities geared toward early-career investigators. The 38th annual meeting takes place Nov. 3-5.
Winship-led presentations and sessions at SITC 2023
Friday, November 3
- Rafi Ahmed, PhD - "PD-1 and IL-2; T Cell Exhaustion"
Concurrent Session 107a: Cytokines in Cancer
3:30 - 5:10 p.m. | Ground Level - Exhibit Hall C
Poster Presentations (Poster Hall hours: 9:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.)
- Megan Wyatt, MS - "Utilizing a Th17 polarization strategy for generating high quality human TIL products for patients with advanced solid tumors" (Abstract #398)
Saturday, November 4
- Jessica Konen, PhD - "Targeting autotaxin enhances immune checkpoint blockade response in NSCLC" (Abstract #545)
Session 205a: Rapid Oral Abstract-Basic Science
12:10 - 1:10 p.m. | Ground Level - Exhibit Hall D
- Kelsey Bennion - "Making their own off switch: Fgl2 produced by antigen-specific CD8+ T cells tempers the CD8+ T-cell response via apoptosis of FcγRIIB+ CD8+ T cell" (Abstract #916)
Session 206: Presidential Session
1:25 - 2:50 p.m. | Ground Level - Exhibit Hall C
- Kavita Dhodapkar, MBBS (co-chair/speaker) - "Influence of Genetics, Social Stressors on Immunity and Health"
Session 208b: Diversity in Patient Populations
5:05 - 6:30 p.m. | Ground Level - Exhibit Hall D
Poster Presentations (Poster Hall hours: 9:00 a.m. - 8:30 p.m.)
- Anna Cole - "Adoptively transferred Th17 cells engage host B cells for durable tumor destruction" (Abstract #353)
- Tyler Kristoff - "Statin drugs augment tumor response to anti-PD-1 immune check point blockade in head and neck cancer patients" (Abstract #489)
- Ayana Ruffin, PhD - "Neoadjuvant SEMA4D inhibitor pepinemab combination with nivolumab increases crosstalk between B cell and CD26hi T cell in patients with resectable stage III melanoma" (Abstract #629)
- Maggie Phillips, MS - "Repurposing CD26/DPP4 inhibitors to enhance immunotherapy response in pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma" (Abstract #823)
- Emilie Warren, MD - "The Galectin-9–Tim-3 pathway is a novel checkpoint target for patients with biliary tract cancer" (Abstract #1507)