INDICATE (Individual Cancer Risk by HLA type) is an international initiative of research groups from Germany (Heidelberg), UK (Newcastle), Finland (Helsinki) and the Netherlands (Groningen) investigating the role of the immune system in tumor development and focusing on individuals with the most common inherited cancer syndrome, Lynch syndrome.
During carcinogenesis, the immune system can recognise and eliminate tumor cells. HLA molecules are responsible for the visibility of the tumor to the immune system and, thus, the HLA type of the individual may influence tumor growth. Lynch syndrome tumors stimulate a strong immune response and Lynch syndrome carriers are an ideal population to benefit from research into the impact of HLA type on cancer risk.
Not all Lynch syndrome carriers develop cancer. Identification of factors influencing their cancer risk is of major clinical importance for precise risk estimation and prevention/treatment design. We aim to delineate the HLA type-related cancer risk and prognosis in Lynch syndrome using a large, international cohort of clinically well-described Lynch syndrome carriers.