Swartz Lab

Cancer metastasis, lymphedema, lipid transport, and immune cell function all depend on lymphatic function or dysfunction, and are all tied to interstitial fluid balance and transport. The lymphatic system is part of the circulation; it drains fluid, solutes, and macromolecules from the interstitial space and returns them to the blood. It also is a critical component of the immune system; immune cells traffic through lymphatic vessels and reside in lymph nodes, where they communicate with each other and can become activated. Cancer cells also utilize lymphatic vessels, and likely interstitial flow, to spread to distant sites throughout the body. Finally, since lymphatic vessels drain lipids (in the form of chylomicrons) from the gut, they play important roles in lipid trafficking and possibly metabolism. Despite its importance, the regulatory biology of lymphatic function is poorly understood.

The Swartz Lab is focused on building an integrated understanding of how these functions relate to each other, particularly with respect to immune regulation and cancer immunotherapy. They use approaches from engineering, physiology, and immunology to reveal underlying mechanisms by which lymphatics fine-tune immune responses,  as well as develop translational applications such as in vitro model systems and novel approaches to cancer immunotherapy. The lab is highly interdisciplinary, and they collaborate with colleagues from immunology, biophysics, cancer biology, clinical oncology, and molecular engineering.

 

Principal Investigator

Melody Swartz

melodyswartz@uchicago.edu

Lymphatic endothelial cells prime naïve CD8+ T cells into memory cells under steady-state conditions

Vokali, E., Yu, S.S., Hirosue, S. et al. Lymphatic endothelial cells prime naïve CD8+ T cells into memory cells under steady-state conditions. Nat Commun 11, 538 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-019-14127-9

Adjuvant-free immunization with infective filarial larvae as lymphatic homing antigen carriers.

Card C, Wilson DS, Hirosue S, Rincon-Restrepo M, de Titta A, Güç E, Martin C, Bain O, Swartz MA, & Kilarski WW. Adjuvant-free immunization with infective filarial larvae as lymphatic homing antigen carriers. Sci Rep 10, 1055 (2020).

Inherent biomechanical traits enable infective filariae to disseminate through collecting lymphatic

Kilarski WW, Martin C, Pisano M, Bain O, Babayan SA, Swartz MA. Inherent biomechanical traits enable infective filariae to disseminate through collecting lymphatic. Nature Communications. 2019.

Tumor-associated factors are enriched in lymphatic exudate compared to plasma in metastatic melanoma

Broggi MAS, Maillat L, Clement CC, Bordry N, Corthésy P, Auger A, Matter M, Hamelin R, Potin L, Demurtas D, Romano E, Harari A, Speiser DE, Santambrogio L, Swartz MA. Tumor-associated factors are enriched in lymphatic exudate compared to plasma in metastatic melanoma. Journal of Experimental Medicine. 2019.

Lymphatic vessel density is associated with CD8+ T cell infiltration

Bordry N, Broggi MAS, de Jonge K, Schaeuble K, Gannon PO, Foukas PG, Danenberg E, Romano E, Baumgaertner P, Fankhauser M, Wald N, Cagnon L, Abed-Maillard S, Maby-El Hajjami H, Murray T, Ioannidou K, Letovanec I, Yan P, Michielin O, Matter M, Swartz MA*, Speiser DE*. Lymphatic vessel density is associated with CD8+ T cell infiltration. OncoImmunology. 2018.

Nanoparticle Conjugation of Human Papillomavirus 16 E7-long Peptides

Galliverti G, Tichet M, Domingos-Pereira S, Hauert S, Nardelli-Haefliger D, Swartz MA, Hanahan D, Wullschleger S. Nanoparticle Conjugation of Human Papillomavirus 16 E7-long Peptides. Cancer Immunology Research. 2018.

Dorsal Ear Skin Window for Intravital Imaging and Functional Analysis of Lymphangiogenesis

Kilarski WW, Güç E, Swartz MA. Dorsal Ear Skin Window for Intravital Imaging and Functional Analysis of Lymphangiogenesis. Methods in Molecular Biology. 2018.

Tumor lymphangiogenesis promotes T cell infiltration and potentiates immunotherapy in melanoma

Fankhauser M*, Broggi MAS*, Potin L, Bordry N, Jeanbart L, Lund QW, Da Costa E, Hauert S, Rincon-Restrepo M, Tremblay C, Cabello E, Homicsko K, Michielin O, Hanahan D, Speiser DE and Swartz MA. Tumor lymphangiogenesis promotes T cell infiltration and potentiates immunotherapy in melanoma. Science Translational Medicine. 2017.

Vaccine nanocarriers

Rincon-Restrepo M, Mayer A, Hauert S, Bonner DK, Phelps EA, Hubbell JA, Swartz MA, Hirosue S. Vaccine nanocarriers. Biomaterials. 2017.

Local induction of lymphangiogenesis

Güç E, Briquez PS, Foretay D, Fankhauser MA, Hubbell JA, Kilarski WW, Swartz MA. Local induction of lymphangiogenesis. Biomaterials. 2017.

View All Publications