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The HIT-GLIO consortium includes 10 research groups spread across 8 countries all focused on targeting tumour-host interactions in paediatric malignant gliomas to reinvigorate immunity and improve radio- and immunotherapy efficacy.
The HIT-GLIO consortium includes 10 research groups spread across 8 countries all focused on targeting tumour-host interactions in paediatric malignant gliomas to reinvigorate immunity and improve radio- and immunotherapy efficacy.

At the end of January 2024, Prof. Ester Hammond and Dr Monica Olcina travelled to the Nencki Institute in Warsaw, Poland for the ‘kick off’ meeting of the HIT-GLIO consortium. HIT-GLIO, which is funded by a HORIZON Europe Framework Programme grant, brings together researchers focused on aggressive paediatric high grade gliomas (pHGG). The consortium is led by Prof. Bożena Kaminska and Dr Katarzyna Leszczynska at the Nencki Institute and includes Prof. Wieslawa Grajkowska (CZD, Poland), Prof. Florent Ginhoux (Gustave Roussy, France), Prof. Ling Peng (CINaM, France), Dr Iosifina Foskolou (Sanquin, Netherlands), Dr Alexander Kel (GeneXplain, Germany), Prof. Dinorah Friedmann-Morvinski (Tel Aviv University, Israel), Dr Francesca Cirulli (Center for Behavioural Sciences and Mental Health, Italy) and Prof. Jacek Majewski (McGill, Canada).

HIT-GLIO has three main objectives: firstly, comprehensive characterisation of tumour-host interactions in human pHGGs, secondly, the development and in-depth characterisation of cellular and mouse models of pHGG to determine tumour-host interactions and identify potential therapeutic targets and thirdly, development and testing of innovative technologies targeting tumour-host interactions to boost immunotherapy and RT response in pHGGs. These ambitious goals will be achieved through a cross-disciplinary approach across the international consortium of  clinicians, medical researchers, biologists, bioinformaticians, and other specialists. The expected outcomes of HIT-GLIO will tremendously expand the team's understanding of the pathobiology of paediatric HGGs, mechanisms of their immune evasion and provide novel conceptual frames and new tools to boost antitumor immunity.

On their return, Prof. Hammond expressed how pleased she and Dr Olcina are to be included in the consortium and specifically “I am very excited about the opportunities being part of HIT-GLIO affords us. It means we have direct links and working relationships with people who can provide us with additional models, problems of drug delivery, access to samples etc. Working as part of this team will really help us make genuine progress.”

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