About the Lab

The Neurosurgical Oncology Laboratory of Ian F. Parney, M.D., Ph.D., at Mayo Clinic is focusing on the cellular and immunological characteristics of malignant brain tumors. Dr. Parney's research team uses immunotherapy, brain tumor stem cells and mouse models of malignant gliomas to further its research.

The Neurosurgical Oncology Laboratory research team has demonstrated that an interrelated cellular network mediates immunosuppression in people with malignant gliomas including glioma cells (differentiated and stem cell phenotypes), tumor-infiltrating monocytes and microglia, circulating myeloid-derived suppressor cells, and regulatory T cells. Multiple molecular mechanisms contribute to these cells' effects, but evidence has implicated a central role for the immunosuppressive T cell co-stimulatory molecule homologue B7-H1. Dr. Parney and his research team are working on disrupting this network to facilitate immunotherapies and develop appropriate murine models of glioma-mediated immunosuppression to allow preclinical testing.

A major research goal of the Neurosurgical Oncology Laboratory is to translate discoveries to the clinic through glioma vaccine clinical trials, an effort that is facilitated by the presence of a current good manufacturing practices (CGMP) laboratory for generating clinical-grade cellular therapy reagents.

Dr. Parney's research team works closely with the Mayo Clinic Brain Cancer Specialized Program of Research Excellence (SPORE), one of five SPOREs that has received national recognition, underscoring Mayo Clinic's exceptional capacity to perform translational research in neuro-oncology.