Dr. Xin Lu received the 2021 Young Investigator Award from Society for Basic Urologic Research (SBUR). SBUR, formed in 1986. is the pre-eminent US-based urologic research society. The SBUR Young Investigator Awards are given to SBUR members who are under the age of 45, within 5 years of their first faculty position, and have made significant contributions to Urologic Research. This award is presented annually at the fall meeting to 2-3 scientists. This year, Dr. Lu won the award together with Dr. Irfan Asangani from University of Pennsylvania. During the 2021 SBUR Annual Meeting (Nov 4-7, 2021), Dr. Lu presented an acceptance speech and a seminar entitled "Prostate cancer and penile cancer: Similarity in immunosuppression".
Dr. Lu’s laboratory is focused on identifying cancer cell intrinsic and extrinsic mechanisms of tumor escape of immune surveillance, particularly in metastatic prostate cancer, breast cancer, and rare cancers (VHL disease, penile cancer). Recent publications from Lu lab firmly establish that immunosuppressive neutrophils (also known as polymorphonuclear myeloid-derived suppressor cells, PMN-MDSCs), play the predominant role in inducing the exhaustion of effector T cells in the tumor microenvironment across multiple solid tumors. A number of mechanisms and targeting strategies of PMN-MDSCs have been reported by the Lu lab (such as CXCR1/2 inhibitor SX-682, tyrosine kinase inhibitor cabozantinib, cyclooxygenase-2 inhibitor celecoxib), which may open new avenues to sensitize advanced malignancies to immune checkpoint blockade therapy. Dr. Lu also investigates and develops novel immunotherapeutics and molecularly-targeted therapeutics, including antibody-drug conjugates, chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-engineered NK cells and small molecules targeting transcription coactivators that promote metastasis. Dr. Lu’s research at Notre Dame is supported by federal and foundation funding agencies, such as NIH/NCI, Department of Defense, Boler Family Foundation, Walther Cancer Foundation, Susan G. Komen Foundation, American Institute for Cancer Research, Elsa U. Pardee Foundation, Mary Kay Foundation, Indiana-CTSI, and internal funds from centers at Notre Dame such as Boler-Parseghian Center for Rare and Neglected Diseases, Harper Cancer Research Institute, and Warren Family Center for Drug Discovery.
For more information about the award, please visit: https://www.sbur.org/awards-and-lectures