Noura is a medical student at the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine. In between her third and fourth years of school, she dedicated one year of research to the Nakamura laboratory.
Noura studied the integrated roles of the genetic and immune landscapes in driving clinical outcome in muscle-invasive bladder cancer (MIBC). More specifically, she conducted T cell receptor sequencing to quantify the diversity of the intratumoral T cell repertoire, and compared how the diversity of intratumoral T cells correlated with the burden of neoantigens, which were predicted based on binding affinity to HLA class I molecules and whole sequencing results. Her work demonstrates evidence for "the neoepitope lottery," where certain tumors may contain the critical neoepitopes capable of eliciting a strong antitumor adaptive immune response that translates into improved clinical outcome.
She will graduate in 2016, and has been inspired by her time in the Nakamura laboratory to pursue a career as a physician-scientist.
Reporter: Xiao Liu