Immune Monitoring Core
University of Southern California
USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center
If you are a patient, please contact Keck Medical Center of USC at 800-USC-CARE.

Immune Monitoring

The Immune Monitoring Core at USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center offers advice, technical support and equipment for all your Immune Monitoring needs. Whether you are a physician and you have samples that you would like to test for parameters that match your clinical responses, you are a graduate student looking for equipment to quantify your ELISPOT data or you are writing a research proposal that includes an immune monitoring component, this is the place to be. Browse through our site to find descriptions of available tests, basic pricing and availability information. If you want to discuss your approach, feel free to contact us directly. You'll find our contact information in the menu. When you are ready to send your samples, call us to arrange for transportation.
Our Mission
Supporting clinical trials for immunotherapy of human cancer:
For physicians involved in clinical trials for immunotherapy of human cancer, the Beckman Center for Immune Monitoring Core offers several assays to assess patient immune responses. Such assays provide a highly sensitive means of measuring the efficacy of an experimental treatment. It can help establish proof of principle that a treatment works, and suggest changes to adapt a standard treatment protocol to individual patient needs. Besides the Gold Standard of Immune monitoring: the ELISPOT assay for detection of cytokines released by activated T cells, we also perform intracellular cytokine staining and can detect tumor specific T cells by MHC tetramer analysis. Helper and killer T cells can be separated, and proliferative and cytotoxic responses are quantified in radioactive assays. The monitoring protocol of choice is tailor made to fit the needs and the possibilities of each treatment protocol. The core offers freezing and storage capacity for your samples and full analytical support for monitoring assays. It is also possible to send in samples for post-assay analysis using our state-of-the-art ELISPOT reader.

Facilitating research with an immune monitoring component:
For researchers within travel distance of our facility, we offer equipment and technical assistance for performance and/or analysis of ELISPOT assays, flow cytometry-based assays, radioisotope-based proliferation and cytotoxicity assays, multiplexing ELISA assays, and molecular-based quantitative PCR assays. Our lab has equipment for controlled rate freezing and storage of cryopreserved peripheral blood cells, tissue culture facilities and an ELISPOT reader to analyze your 96 well plates.  Assays and technical support are also available to support translational projects that utilize in-vitro and in vivo animal models. Please contact us for equipment availability and technical support.

Your Questions
IMC staff members are here to answer your questions about immune monitoring. What is the best assay to look for an immune response in my patients? Can I get funding to support a monitoring component for my clinical trial? What antibody should I use to detect my antigen? How should I send my samples in for monitoring? Is there a better way to interpret my results? Contact us, and we will help you find the answer.