Building on the growing field of immunooncology, NanoString Technologies, Seattle, Wash, has introduced the PanCancer immune profiling panel, a highly multiplexed gene expression panel for the nCounter analysis system. The panel will enable researchers to create profiles of the human immune response to various forms of cancer, potentially leading to the discovery of new drugs, therapies, and predictive biomarkers for immunotherapy treatment response.

The PanCancer immune profiling panel is a novel tool designed to facilitate further exploration into key research areas, such as targeting of checkpoint blockades, development of chimeric antigen receptors for T-cell therapy, and the identification of adjuvants for stimulating the immune response in the tumor microenvironment. The panel comprises 770 genes, including more than 100 genes for the identification of 24 different immune cell types; 30 genes specific for the expression of recognized cancer antigens; genes involved with checkpoint blockade; and key immune pathway genes for both innate adaptive and humoral immune responses.

The panel was developed in collaboration with a number of international leaders in the field of immuneoncology, including Jérôme Galon, PhD, research director at the Cordeliers Research Center of the French Institute of Health and Medical Research, in Paris, France.

According to Galon, “NanoString’s PanCancer immune profiling panel . . . will undoubtedly provide valuable insights for all types of cancer research. By studying gene expression patterns across immune cell types, cancer antigens, checkpoint blockades, and genes involved with both the innate and adaptive immune response, researchers will now be able to construct an in-depth profile for how the host immune system is responding to cancer.”

The immune profiling panel is intended to complement NanoString’s other recent launch, the PanCancer Pathways panel, says Joseph Beechem, PhD, senior vice president of research and development at NanoString Technologies. The Pathways panel analyzes all the key cancer pathways, including apoptosis, cell cycle, chromatin modification, DNA damage control, Hedgehog, MAPK, Notch, PI3K, RAS, STAT, TGF?, transcriptional regulation, and Wnt.

“Our collaboration with Dr. Galon has greatly helped guide the development of this new panel that will enable researchers to bridge the gap between what drives tumor growth, and what attempts to control tumor growth, in order to promote a better understanding of immunooncology,” Beechem says.

The combination of the immune profiling and pathways panels allows scientists to study both the immune response to cancer and the impact of cancer on gene expression across all major cancer pathways—generating a collection of more than 1,300 unique cancer-related genes that can be tested in parallel. The panels can be used on all sample types supported by NanoString’s nCounter system, including formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded specimens, whole blood, or peripheral blood mononuclear cells and cell lysates.

For more information, visit NanoString Technologies.