EMBO workshop

June 28-30

Lugano, Switzerland

Università della Svizzera Italiana, East Campus

Meet Lunaphore

Join us in Lugano for the EMBO workshop: Imaging the Immune System.

Meet our scientists on site and discover our universal, end-to-end spatial biology solution, answering the needs of the scientific community from early discovery to late-stage translational and clinical research.

Our solutions allow you to minimize validation challenges and move fast from biomarker discovery to translational research.

Want to know more about our spatial biology solutions? Send us a message and secure a meeting with the team.

The immune system consists of myriad of cell types and soluble factors, whose complex interplay ensures host protection against microbes and tumors. Our understanding of the complexity underlying the immune system has greatly advanced by the development of novel tools, including cutting-edge imaging techniques. The aim of our meeting will be to share the latest findings on immune cell dynamics at the molecular, cellular and tissue-level and exchange on the newest technical developments for visualizing and manipulating immune processes.

The “Imaging the Immune System” (IIS) is a highly successful biannual conference series established in 2014 and now held in its 5th edition as an EMBO Workshop in Lugano (see venue). It gathers 200-250 attendants from the US, Asia and Europe, who specialize in visualizing immune cells in their physiological context. From previous editions, we expect numerous principal investigators attending who wish to update themselves on scientific and technological developments.

Besides presentations from invited speakers, the meeting will provide ample opportunities for oral and poster presentations by young scientists and sufficient time for informal discussions to foster networking and new collaborative projects.


Poster Presentation

Poster Sessions

In the past decade, the focus of novel anti-cancer therapies shifted from tumor-intrinsic targets to harnessing and empowering the immune cells to fight against malignant cells (PMID: 34624224). Immune system-targeting approaches have seen increasing clinical success (PMID: 29990692). To further innovate and continue to improve such therapeutical interventions, more detailed knowledge of the tissue-immune cell interaction is needed (PMID: 33811120). Spatial proteomics provides unprecedented and detailed views on immune cell phenotypes while preserving spatial tissue context (PMID: 34811556) and can be insightful for therapy design (PMID: 32466969). Sequential Immunofluorescence (seqIF™) is a novel method, where cycles of antibody-based detection of antigens, imaging, and elution steps are fully automated and integrated on the COMET™ platform. Here, we present how the seqIF™ methodology can be applied to map immune cells across different tumor immune microenvironments (TIME) and underpin their activation phenotypes. 

Formalin-fixed, paraformaldehyde-embedded (FFPE) and frozen section (FS) tissue slides were interrogated with hyperplex panels encompassing main immune cell biomarkers and using off-the-shelf reagents. Hyperplex immunofluorescent protocol was performed with automated staining-imaging COMET™ platform generating ome-tiff images composed of 43 layers: DAPI, 2 autofluorescent, and 40 marker channels for FFPE sample and 35 layers: DAPI, 2 autofluorescent, and 32 marker channels for FS specimens. Image postprocessing was performed with the HORIZON™ Image analysis software. 

40 biomarkers were detected on a single tissue slide per automated run and underpinned the heterogeneity in the immune cell distribution across different tumor types present within multiorgan tissue array dataset. Results on both FFPE and FS samples shows excellent tissue preservation through the whole workflow. The imaging enabled the identification of several immune cell phenotypes and provided sufficient resolution to identify the subcellular distribution of detected biomarkers. 


Joanna Kowal, Ph.D.

Joanna Kowal, Ph.D.

Senior Scientific Affairs Manager

Lunaphore Technologies

Joanna got fascinated by cell biology during her master’s degree studies at Jagiellonian University, Krakow, Poland. Afterwards she joined Institut Curie, Paris, France, where she developed a proteomic cartography of extracellular vesicles in the frame of her Ph.D. research project. She obtained a Ph.D. degree from Université Paris Descartes in 2016. During her postdoctoral training at the University of Lausanne, Joanna interrogated the interaction within the tumor microenvironment with a focus on immune and malignant cells in the context of primary brain tumors. She joined Lunaphore in 2020 and since then works on bringing spatial biology to every laboratory.