Invited talk 6
Dr. Rio SUGIMURA
School of Biomedical Sciences,
University of Hong Kong
Dr. Rio Sugimura received his M.D. from Osaka University, Japan, in 2008, and his Ph.D. in Stem Cells and Regeneration from the Stowers Institute for Medical Research, USA, in 2012. He has been trained at world-leading institutes, including Harvard Medical School and Kyoto University. He is an Assistant Professor in the School of Biomedical Sciences, The University of Hong Kong. He is interested in engineering immune cells for cancer immunotherapy.
Topic: Engineering immunology. From human embryonic organoids to the unexpected role of the immune checkpoint
Summary: I will overview our recent studies in engineering immune cells from stem cells. We have established human embryonic organoids (HEMOs) from human pluripotent stem cells. Single-cell spatiotemporal transcriptomics revealed the gene expression landscape of hematopoiesis in the yolk sac (Chao Y., 2021 Biorxiv). HEMOs generate functional macrophages. We examined the role of immune checkpoint PD-L1 in the macrophages. Contrary to the immune-suppressive role, PD-L1 regulates inflammatory macrophages by maintaining interferon-gamma signaling (Cao H., 2021 Biorxiv). I will further discuss our latest attempt at modeling cancer-immune cell interactions with HEMOs.