Brain Cancer Microenvironment and Biology Laboratory

Research Overview

Our research goal is to understand the molecular and cellular biology of brain cancer.
One of our key research areas is to investigate the brain tumour microenvironment.

To successfully manage difficult-to-treat cancers, such as brain cancer, both the cancer cells and the non-cancer cells within the tumour tissue, including tumour infiltrating immune cells must be considered. In brain cancer one of the phenomena which must be overcome for successful treatment is tumour-specific immunosuppression. This immunosuppression blocks the body’s own immune system or immunotherapies from killing the cancer cells.

We are exploring how the cancer cells and tumour immune cells cooperate to establish immunosuppression. To do this, we use state-of-the-art microscopy and computational biology to map brain tumours to identify the cells and the factors, which control tumour immunosuppression (see image below). This research will allow us to understand how to modulate the tumour and immune system to provide long-term control of brain tumour growth, to ultimately transform deadly brain cancers into manageable chronic diseases.

We have also developed a genetically engineered mouse model in which we can mimic human brain tumour development. Using these mice, we can trigger brain cancer at different ages to model specific human brain tumour types and to test novel therapies, which can then be moved to clinical trials in patients.


Dr Martin Tymms (Honorary Senior Research Fellow)

Marija Dinevska (PhD student)

Liam Furst (Masters Biomedical Science student)

Lucero Cuzcano (Honours student)


Dr Stanley Stylli (University of Melbourne & Royal Melbourne Hospital)

Associate Professor Andrew Morokoff (University of Melbourne & Royal Melbourne Hospital)

Professor Kate Drummond (University of Melbourne & Royal Melbourne Hospital)

Dr Alexander Barrow (Peter Doherty Institute)

Associate Professor Vicki Lawson (Peter Doherty Institute)

Associate Professor Paul Neeson (Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre)

Professor Phil Darcy (Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre)

Professor Rob Ramsay (Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre)

Dr Stefano Mangiola (Walter & Eliza Hall Institute)

Dr Jason Cain (Hudson Institute)

Research Publications

View Dr Theo Mantamadiotis's latest PubMed publications here

Research Projects

This Research Group doesn't currently have any projects

Faculty Research Themes


School Research Themes

Cancer in Medicine

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact Dr Theo Mantamadiotis

Department / Centre


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