Immunology and molecular genetics of gynecological cancers


Dr.T. Bosse, Prof.dr. V.T.H.B.M. Smit

We ultimately aims to deliver personalized medicine for the treatment of female cancers with a special focus on endometrial and vulvar carcinomas. The whole pipeline from bench to bedside is covered with special focus on cancer genetics, immunotherapy and molecular therapeutics.

Specific objectives are; 

  1. To identify diagnostic and predictive markers as well as novel drug and immunotherapy targets. Tumours are characterized at the genomic, expression and immunophenotypical level, after which the functional relevance of the identified molecular alterations is evaluated using several in vitro and in vivo models (including stem cells, 3D culture). Clinical translation is secured by the validation of promising markers in high quality tissue repositories including clinical trial material.
  2. To rapidly implement results in molecular diagnostics as well as in clinical trial design.


Examples of current projects

  • Molecular profiling of high-risk endometrial cancers  (KWF 2018)
  • “To Treat or not To Treat, that is the Question” Explaining the POLE paradox (KWF, YIG, T. Bosse)
  • Exploiting homologous recombination deficiency (HRD) in uterine serous cancer (LUMC Profile area Cancer Pathogenesis and Therapy)
  • PORTEC4a: Randomised Phase III Trial of molecular profile-based versus standard recommendation for adjuvant radiotherapy for women with stage I-II endometrial cancer with high-intermediate risk features. (KWF)

Position in international context.

The research is performed within the context of international consortia such as the European network for translational research on endometrial cancer (ENITEC) and the international translational research team for PORTEC trials (TransPORTEC).  

Within the LUMC the research is embedded within the research profile areas “Cancer Pathogenesis and Therapy” ( as well as “Biomedical Imaging” ( There is intensive collaboration with the department of human genetics ( Dr. M Vreeswijk),  the department of radiation oncology ( Prof. dr. C.L. Creutzberg) and the department of gynecologic oncology ( dr. C. de Kroon).