Leisha Emens Lab

  • The Emens Lab is focused on characterizing the breast tumor microenvironment and on developing effective combination immunotherapies for breast cancer that improve patient outcomes. The lab has tested two vaccine approaches, a cell-based vaccine and an intratumoral vaccine that activates the STING pathway. Emens and her team have combined these vaccines with standard breast cancer therapy and other novel I/O drugs to achieve additive or synergistic activity. The Emens Lab is also investigating the effectiveness of targeting the PD-1 pathway in combination with other immunoregulatory pathways, including IDO, A2AR and TIGIT. Emens has a key role in the development of atezolizumab for the treatment of both triple-negative breast cancer and HER-2+ breast cancer. The group has applied similar immunotherapy strategies to ovarian cancer.

    Research Areas: breast cancer, triple-negative breast cancer, vaccines, cancer, immunotherapy

    Principal Investigator

    Leisha Emens, M.D., Ph.D.

    Department

    Oncology