Wouter R.L. Hendrickx

Wouter R.L. Hendrickx
Sidra Medicine · Research Branch

PhD

About

76
Publications
15,365
Reads
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1,939
Citations
Citations since 2017
44 Research Items
1434 Citations
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20172018201920202021202220230100200300
20172018201920202021202220230100200300
Introduction
As a scientist I'm interested in processes that involve cell plasticity like stem cells, differentiation, embryology and cancer. My research experience has mainly been focused on cancer research. I have participated in several projects looking into the molecular mechanisms underlying the tumour and metastasis-suppressive effects of MMP's and investigated the role of the degradome. Since 2016 I have shifted my focus to the role of the immune system in cancer biology with a focus on cancer immunogenetics.
Additional affiliations
November 2014 - November 2017
Sidra Medicine
Position
  • Sr.Post-Doctoral Fellow
September 2012 - present
University of East Anglia
Position
  • Proteases and Pancreatic cancer
August 2012 - March 2014
University of East Anglia
Position
  • PostDoc Position
Education
October 2008 - September 2011
U.E.A.
Field of study
  • Prostate Cancer
September 2001 - June 2002
KU Leuven
Field of study
  • Bio Informatics
September 1997 - July 2001
Vrije Universiteit Brussel
Field of study
  • Biomedical Research

Publications

Publications (76)
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Background The immune system recognizes foreign microorganisms as ”non-self” and reacts to destroy these disease-causing agents, playing a similar role in protecting the body from malignancies. The spatial distribution of T cell subsets in tumor tissues, like colon cancer, may provide information on the role of the immune system in tumor developmen...
Article
Full-text available
The purpose of this study was to evaluate the association between four distinct histopathological features: (1) tumor infiltrating lymphocytes, (2) mucinous differentiation, (3) tumor-stroma ratio, plus (4) tumor budding and two gene expression-based classifiers—(1) consensus molecular subtypes (CMS) plus (2) colorectal cancer intrinsic subtypes (C...
Article
Full-text available
Background Advances in our understanding of the tumor microenvironment have radically changed the cancer field, highlighting the emerging need for biomarkers of an active, favorable tumor immune phenotype to aid treatment stratification and clinical prognostication. Numerous immune-related gene signatures have been defined; however, their prognosti...
Article
Full-text available
Sepsis is an aberrant systemic inflammatory response mediated by the acute activation of the innate immune system. Neutrophils are important contributors to the innate immune response that controls the infection, but harbour the risk of collateral tissue damage such as thrombosis and organ dysfunction. A better understanding of the modulations of c...
Article
Full-text available
Breast cancer largely dominates the global cancer burden statistics; however, there are striking disparities in mortality rates across countries. While socioeconomic factors contribute to population-based differences in mortality, they do not fully explain disparity among women of African ancestry (AA) and Arab ancestry (ArA) compared to women of E...
Article
We recently found by single-cell mass cytometry that ex vivo human B cells internalize graphene oxide (GO). The functional impact of such uptake on B cells remains unexplored. Here, we disclosed the effects of GO and amino-functionalized GO (GONH2) interacting with human B cells in vitro and ex vivo at the protein and gene expression levels. Moreov...
Article
Full-text available
PReferentially expressed Antigen in Melanoma (PRAME) is a cancer testis antigen with restricted expression in somatic tissues and re-expression in poor prognostic solid tumours. PRAME has been extensively investigated as a target for immunotherapy, however, its role in modulating the anti-tumour immune response remains largely unknown. Here, we sho...
Article
Viruses are the second leading cause of cancer worldwide, and human papillomavirus (HPV)-associated head and neck cancers are increasing in incidence in the United States. HPV preferentially infects the crypts of the tonsils rather than the surface epithelium. The present study sought to characterize the unique microenvironment within the crypts to...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background Immunotherapy is quickly coming to the forefront of cancer treatment; however, the implementation of immunotherapy in solid pediatric cancers, which classically display a low mutational load, is hindered by insufficient understanding of the determinants of cancer immune responsiveness in children. In order to better understand tumor-host...
Article
Full-text available
A cancer immune phenotype characterized by an active T-helper 1 (Th1)/cytotoxic response is associated with responsiveness to immunotherapy and favorable prognosis across different tumors. However, in some cancers, such an intratumoral immune activation does not confer protection from progression or relapse. Defining mechanisms associated with immu...
Article
Full-text available
Motivation: We previously described the construction and characterization of generic and reusable blood transcriptional module repertoires. More recently we released a third iteration ("BloodGen3" module repertoire) that comprises 382 functionally annotated gene sets (modules) and encompasses 14,168 transcripts. Custom bioinformatic tools are need...
Article
Understanding the contribution of the host’s genetic background to cancer immunity may lead to improved stratification for immunotherapy and to the identification of novel therapeutic targets. We investigated the effect of common and rare germline variants on 139 well-defined immune traits in ∼9000 cancer patients enrolled in TCGA. High heritabilit...
Article
Full-text available
Background It is now well established that the immune system has a substantial role in controlling cancer growth and progression. Immunotherapy is quickly coming to the forefront of cancer treatment,however the implementation of immunotherapy in pediatric solid cancers, which classically display a low mutational load, is hindered by insufficient un...
Article
Full-text available
Introduction: Natural killer (NK) cells and natural killer T (NKT) cells are implicated in the development and progression of colorectal cancer (CRC). Tumor cells express NK cell receptor ligands that modulate their function. This study aimed to investigate the expression of such ligands in CRC in relation to the phenotype of circulating NK- and NK...
Article
Full-text available
According to publicly available transcriptome datasets, the abundance of Annexin A3 (ANXA3) is robustly increased during the course of sepsis; however, no studies have examined the biological significance or clinical relevance of ANXA3 in this pathology. Here we explored this interpretation gap and identified possible directions for future research...
Preprint
Transcriptional modules have been widely used for the analysis, visualization and interpretation of transcriptome data. We have previously described the construction and characterization of generic and reusable blood transcriptional module repertoires. The third and latest version that we have recently made available comprises 382 functionally anno...
Article
Full-text available
Human leukocyte antigen G (HLA-G), known as a central protein in providing immune tolerance to the fetus in pregnant women, is also studied for a possible role in tumor development. Many studies have claimed HLA-G as a new immune checkpoint in cancer. Therefore, HLA-G and its receptors might be targets for immune checkpoint blockade in cancer immun...
Article
Full-text available
Background An immune active cancer phenotype typified by a T helper 1 (Th-1) immune response has been associated with increased responsiveness to immunotherapy and favorable prognosis in some but not all cancer types. The reason of this differential prognostic connotation remains unknown. Methods To explore the contextual prognostic value of cance...
Preprint
Full-text available
The role of germline genetics in shaping the tumor immune landscape is largely unknown. Using genotypes from >9,000 individuals in The Cancer Genome Atlas, we investigated the association of common and rare variants with 139 well-defined immune traits. Our analysis of common variants identified 10 immune traits with significant heritability estimat...
Article
Full-text available
A potential role for the long-chain acyl-CoA synthetase family member 1 (ACSL1) in the immunobiology of sepsis was explored during a hands-on training workshop. Participants first assessed the robustness of the potential gap in biomedical knowledge identified via an initial screen of public transcriptome data and of the literature associated with A...
Article
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Imiquimod is a topical toll-like-receptor-7 agonist currently used for treating basal cell carcinoma. Recently, imiquimod has demonstrated tumor regression in melanoma and breast cancer skin metastases. However, the molecular perturbations induced by imiquimod in breast cancer metastases have not been previously characterized. Here, we describe tra...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background It is becoming clear that tumor immune T cell infiltration and its functional orientation have substantial effect on cancer progression, influencing both response to therapy and prognosis. In this pan-cancer study, the previously described Immunologic Constant of Rejection (ICR) signature is used to define opposing immune phenotypes (i.e...
Preprint
Steps involved in reductionist investigation approaches can be imitated using public transcriptome datasets as source of training material. In the present report trainees explored an apparent gap in biological knowledge for FAM129A (family with sequence similarity 129 member A). Elevated abundance of FAM129A transcripts were observed in a transcrip...
Preprint
Full-text available
A hands-on training workshop was devised with omics data used as source material to emulate reductionist investigation approaches. NUDT16, a member of the Nudix hydrolase family was selected as a candidate gene on the basis of: 1) it being upregulated in neutrophils exposed in vitro to serum of patients with sepsis, AND 2) the absence of overlap be...
Article
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Anti-cancer immunotherapy is encountering its own checkpoint. Responses are dramatic and long lasting but occur in a subset of tumors and are largely dependent upon the pre-existing immune contexture of individual cancers. Available data suggest that three landscapes best define the cancer microenvironment: immune-active, immune-deserted and immune...
Article
Background: The immunologic constant of rejection (ICR) is a broad phenomenon of Th-1 immunity-mediated, tissue-specific destruction. Methods: We tested the prognostic value of a 20-gene ICR expression signature in 8766 early breast cancers. Results: Thirty-three percent of tumours were ICR1, 29% ICR2, 23% ICR3, and 15% ICR4. In univariate ana...
Article
Full-text available
NY-ESO-1 or New York esophageal squamous cell carcinoma 1 is a well-known cancer-testis antigen (CTAs) with re-expression in numerous cancer types. Its ability to elicit spontaneous humoral and cellular immune responses, together with its restricted expression pattern, have rendered it a good candidate target for cancer immunotherapy. In this revie...
Article
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The increased application of high-throughput approaches in translational research has expanded the number of publicly available data repositories. Gathering additional valuable information contained in the datasets represents a crucial opportunity in the biomedical field. To facilitate and stimulate utilization of these datasets, we have recently d...
Article
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With the advent of checkpoint inhibition, immunotherapy has revolutionized the clinical management of several cancers, but has demonstrated limited efficacy in mammary carcinoma. Transcriptomic profiling of cancer samples defined distinct immunophenotypic categories characterized by different prognostic and predictive connotations. In breast cancer...
Article
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Understanding the biomolecular interactions between graphene and human immune cells is a prerequisite for its utilization as a diagnostic or therapeutic tool. To characterize the complex interactions between graphene and immune cells, we propose an integrative analytical pipeline encompassing the evaluation of molecular and cellular parameters. Her...
Article
Full-text available
The immune system has a substantial effect on colorectal cancer (CRC) progression. Additionally, the response to immunotherapeutics and conventional treatment options (e.g., chemotherapy, radiotherapy and targeted therapies) is influenced by the immune system. The molecular characterization of colorectal cancer (CRC) has led to the identification o...
Article
Full-text available
The introduction of immune checkpoint blockade into the clinical practice resulted in improvement of survival of a significant portion of melanoma patients. Consequently, predictive biomarkers of response are needed to optimize patient's stratification and the development of combination therapies. The aim of this study was to determine whether leve...
Article
Full-text available
The increased application of high-throughput approaches in translational research has expanded the number of publicly available data repositories. Gathering additional valuable information contained in the datasets represents a crucial opportunity in the biomedical field. To facilitate and stimulate utilization of these datasets, we have recently d...
Article
Full-text available
Cancer immunotherapy is revolutionizing the clinical management of several tumors, but has demonstrated limited activity in breast cancer. The development of more effective treatments is hindered by incomplete knowledge of the genetic determinant of immune responsiveness. To fill this gap, we mined copy number alteration, somatic mutation, and expr...
Article
Full-text available
The abundance and functional orientation of tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes in breast cancer is associated with distant metastasis-free survival, yet how this association is influenced by tumor phenotypic heterogeneity is poorly understood. Here, a bioinformatics approach defined tumor biologic attributes that influence this association and delineat...
Conference Paper
Breast cancer is the most common type of tumor in women in the MENA region and it represents about 20% of the cancers diagnosed every year in Qatar. Although the implementation of cancer therapy has led to an improvement of patients' survival, metastatic breast cancer remains an incurable condition. Immunotherapy is emerging as an innovative therap...
Article
Full-text available
Matrix metalloproteinase-8 (MMP-8; neutrophil collagenase) is an important regulator of innate immunity which has onco-suppressive actions in numerous tumor types. We have intercrossed Mmp8-null mice with the Polyoma virus middle T oncogene-driven (MMTV-PyMT) mouse model of mammary cancer to explore the effects of loss of MMP-8 on the incidence and...
Article
Purpose of review: Here, we focus on molecular biomarkers derived from transcriptomic studies to summarize the recent advances in our understanding of the mechanisms associated with differential prognosis and treatment outcome in breast cancer. Recent findings: Breast cancer is certainly immunogenic; yet it has been historically resistant to imm...
Article
Full-text available
For a long time, the lack of a human-centered translational approach to tumor immunology has led to the accumulation of a multitude of disjointed clinical and basic researches, followed by a disharmonic growth of scientific knowledge. The huge amount of conjectural hypotheses has competitively interfered with the few evidence-based concepts generat...
Chapter
For a long time, the lack of a human-centered translational approach to tumor immunology has led to the accumulation of a multitude of disjointed clinical and basic researches, followed by a disharmonic growth of scientifi c knowledge. The huge amount of conjectural hypotheses has competitively interfered with the few evidence-based concepts genera...
Article
Full-text available
Dietary selenium intake has been linked to reduced cancer risk, however the underlying mechanisms are yet unknown. We question the commonly used practice of applying selenium concentrations found in human blood to in vitro studies and evaluated the utility of biomarkers, e.g., glutathione peroxidase 1 (GPx1) and thioredoxin reductase 1 (TrxR1), to...
Article
Full-text available
Axillary lymph node involvement is an important prognostic factor for breast cancer survival but is confounded by the number of nodes examined. We compare the performance of the log odds prognostic index (Lpi), using a ratio of the positive versus negative lymph nodes, with the Nottingham Prognostic Index (NPI) for short-term breast cancer specific...
Article
Full-text available
To study the relation between the presence of axillary lymph node (LN) involvement and age in breast cancer. The breast cancer database of the University Hospitals Leuven contains complete data on 2,227 patients with early breast cancer consecutively treated between 2000 and 2005. A multivariate piecewise logistic regression model was used to analy...
Article
Full-text available
Prognostic subgroup classification of operable breast cancers using cDNA clustering of breast cancer-related genes resembles the classification based on the combined immunohistochemical (IHC) expression of the hormone and HER-2 receptors. We here report the short-term disease-free interval (DFI) of operable breast cancers by their joint hormone rec...
Article
Inflammatory breast cancer (IBC) is a rare but aggressive form of breast cancer. It is mainly a clinical diagnosis. The aim of this study was to compare IBC to clinically diagnosed noninflammatory locally advanced nonmetastatic breast cancer, also called cLABC. One hundred and eight patients were studied: 49 with IBC and 59 with cLABC. The followin...
Article
Full-text available
Numerous studies have linked cathepsins and their inhibitor cystatin C to tumor invasion and metastasis. We examined whether cathepsin B, cathepsin H, cathepsin X and cystatin C could be detected in sera from women with early stage or inflammatory breast cancer and whether they correlated with clinicopathological characteristics. Preoperative serum...
Article
Numerous studies have linked cathepsins and their inhibitor cystatin C to tumor invasion and metastasis. We examined whether cathepsin B, cathepsin H, cathepsin X and cystatin C could be detected in sera from women with early-stage or inflammatory breast cancer and whether they correlated with clinicopathological characteristics. Preoperative serum...
Article
Full-text available
The negative association between the oestrogen receptor (ER) and the human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER-2) in breast cancer travels in both directions. ER+ tumours are less likely HER-2+ and HER-2+ tumours are less likely ER+. We studied the age-related immunohistochemical (IHC) expression of ER, progesterone receptor (PR) and HER-2 in 2...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Elevated levels of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) have been found to associate with poor prognosis in various carcinomas. This study aimed at evaluating plasma levels of the collagenases MMP1, MMP8 and MMP13 as diagnostic and prognostic markers of breast cancer. Using ELISA, plasma levels of MMP1, MMP8 and MMP13 were measured in 42 control indivi...
Article
Full-text available
Elevated levels of matrix metalloproteinases have been found to associate with poor prognosis in various carcinomas. This study aimed at evaluating plasma levels of MMP1, MMP8 and MMP13 as diagnostic and prognostic markers of breast cancer. A total of 208 breast cancer patients, of which 21 with inflammatory breast cancer, and 42 healthy controls w...
Article
Full-text available
To examine the frequency of axillary lymph node (ALN) invasion of operable breast cancers by their combined oestrogen receptor (ER), progesterone receptor (PR) and HER-2 status. 2227 recently operated cases in one centre were retrieved from the Multidisciplinary Breast Centre database and stratified according to their combined immunohistochemical (...