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Polygence Scholar2022
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Alexandra Meyer

Phillips Exeter AcademyClass of 2025Los Angeles, California


Hi! My name is Lexi Meyer and the focus of my research was hypoxia in the tumor microenvironment. I wanted to understand how oxygenation correlates to the efficacy of immunotheraputics such as chimeric antigen receptor-T (CAR-T) cells. Biology has been a huge passion of mine since entering high school but I've struggled to find opportunities to write research of my own. With my project complete, I hope to publish in a verified scientific journal.


Project Portfolio

Effect of Hypoxia on Resistance to Immunotherapy

Started June 17, 2022

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Abstract or project description

Tumor formation requires rapid proliferation of malignant cells, which consume large amounts of oxygen from the microenvironment to meet metabolic demands. The resulting tumor microenvironment (TME) is usually low in oxygen compared to healthy tissue and left in a hypoxic state. Immune cells in the tissue rely on oxygen for energy production, therefore immune function is often inhibited in the TME. Novel immunotherapy treatments aim to reinvigorate the immune system, thus making hypoxia a concrete barrier against immunotherapeutics targeting solid tumors. Furthermore, oxygen levels are highly variable depending on the tissue, raising the question of the influence of physoxia on immune cell survival in hypoxic counterparts. This review aims to provide insight into the mechanisms that influence this question, using an in-silico approach, in order to understand how the field can improve immunotherapy treatments for patients.