Flow cytometry (oncology)
Flow cytometry in oncology drug development is commonly employed to explore changes in tumor microenvironment or systemic changes following immuno-oncology therapy. This assay can identify up to 11 different immune cell subsets (e.g., naive CD4+ and CD8+ T cells, central and effector memory T cells) in a single assay, and can also identify activation or inhibitory biomarkers on those subsets.
The most common tissues analyzed are tumor, bone marrow, draining lymph nodes, spleen as well as whole blood. In humanized mouse and CAR T/TCR, flow cytometry is widely used to assess T-cell engraftment and persistence. Ex vivo stimulation of T cells isolated from a number of tissues, including tumor, can be used to assess cytokine production (IFNg, TNFa, IL2, etc.) from specific immune cell subsets, including CD4+ and CD8+ T cells, proving a vital tool for preliminary in vitro studies to preclinical/clinical studies.