Scientific partner: Prof. Bernd Bodenmiller, Johanna Wagner, Sandra Tietscher – Department of Quantitative Biomedicine, University of Zurich
Prof. Bodenmiller's research group at the Department of Quantitative Biomedicine at the University of Zurich has been working with samples from the PATH Biobank since 2013. The working title for the first cooperation was: "Analyzing human breast tumor heterogeneity and macrophage infiltrates and their relevance for patient outcomes by mass cytometry".
For these investigations, the so-called mass cytometry technique is used, which Prof. Bodenmiller co-developed as a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford University and has since successfully developed further. This method is similar to flow cytometry. Individual cells are labelled with antibodies and analysed. The special feature is that up to 100 "characteristics" (so-called biomarkers) of a single cell can be investigated simultaneously. This is enabled by the use of metal isotope-coupled antibodies.
The investigations have already resulted in a scientific publication in the journal Cell, which bears the title: „A Single-Cell Atlas of the Tumor and Immune Ecosystem of Human Breast Cancer“.