Hypoxic stress in the tumor microenvironment is associated with tumor resistance to anti-cancer therapies. Hypoxia has been reported to play a key role in shielding tumour cells from immune cell attack either by promoting immune suppression, or by inducing many other oncogenic events and/or resistance mechanism (e.g. autophagy) in cancer cells, allowing tumour to escape from immune cell attack. We are interested in studying the molecular mechanism by which hypoxia allows cancer cells escape from immune surveillance and to investigate how targeting autophagy could improve cancer immunotherapy by switching the tumor microenvironment from immunosuppressive to immunopermissive for cytotoxic immune cells. Our collaboration with Gustave Roussy Cancer Center (France) allows us to conduct research at the interface between fundamental and clinically-oriented research programs.

Research projects

  • Effect of targeting hypoxia-induced autophagy in the improvement of the anti-tumour immune response in vivo.
  • Investigation of the autophagy-dependent mechanism involved in the regulation of tumour cell susceptibility to immune cell-mediated killing under hypoxic stress.
  • Study of the temporal dynamic of immune cells infiltrating autophagy competent or defective hypoxic tumours.

Featured Publications

Driving cytotoxic natural killer cells into melanoma: If CCL5 plays the music, autophagy calls the shots.

  • Tumor Microenvironment
  • Immuno-Pharmacology and Interactomics
  • Allergy and Clinical Immunology
September 11, 2018
2018 Sep. Crit Rev Oncog.23(5-6). In press.
  • Xiao M
  • Noman MZ
  • Menard L
  • Chevigne A
  • Szpakowska M
  • Bosseler M
  • Ollert M
  • Berchem G
  • Janji B.

Actin cytoskeleton remodeling drives breast cancer cell escape from natural killer-mediated cytotoxicity.

  • Cytoskeleton and Cancer Progression
  • National Cytometry Platform
  • NORLUX-Glioma Biology
  • Tumor Microenvironment
August 13, 2018
2018 Aug. Cancer Res. [Epub ahead of print].
  • Al Absi A
  • Wurzer H
  • Guerin CL
  • Hoffmann C
  • Moreau F
  • Mao X
  • Brown-Clay J
  • Petrolli R
  • Pou Casellas C
  • Dieterle M
  • Thiery JP
  • Chouaib S
  • Berchem G
  • Janji B
  • Thomas C.
See all publications


Bassam Janji


84, rue Val Fleuri
L-1526 Luxembourg
Tel. : +352 26970-285