The main research interests of Dr. Malenica are the adaptive tumor immunology and the cross-talk of CD8+ tumor-infiltrating lymphocytes (TILs) with the tumor microenvironment (TME).
During her PhD, she focused on the functional characterisation of tissue-resident memory CD8+ T cells (TRM) in lung cancer and on the impact of tumor cells in TRM development. For addressing these complex question, Dr. Malenica established a cohort of more than 200 patients that included tumoral and blood samples in Gustave Roussy Institute, Villejuif (Paris), France. She developed new mouse and human cell lines with CRISPR/Cas9 technology for in vitro and in vivo experiments and applied a wide variety of techniques at biological and molecular levels.
Her overall research aim is to answer the question how the TME impacts functional development and cytotoxic capacities of TRM cell in tumors.