Evelien Smits

Professor in Tumor Immunology

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About Evelien Smits

Do you know that we have a natural defense mechanism against cancer? Our immune system!

As research professor in tumor immunology and cancer immunotherapy I am fascinated by the interactions between immune cells and cancer cells. I investigate weapons to empower the immune system of cancer patients to eliminate cancer cells. By doing so, I contribute to immunotherapy as 'scientific breakthrough of the year' (awarded by Science in 2013).

My research team, the Solid Tumor Immunology Group (STIG) of the Center for Oncological Research, develops novel combination treatments with immunotherapy to beat cancer and investigates the mechanisms used by cancer cells to escape from immunity. Key words of my research are: immunotherapy, combination therapy, innate immunity, immune checkpoints, stroma, Toll-like receptors and hypoxia. I am also one of the coordinators of academic clinical studies at the Center for Cell Therapy and Regenerative Medicine to test dendritic cell vaccination as cancer immunotherapy and of translational research to further improve this cell therapy. In addition, together with Prof. Annemie Bogaerts (Chemistry) and Prof. Sylvia Dewilde (Biomedical Sciences), we built up the multidisciplinary UAntwerp plasma oncology team, in which we investigate ionized gas as an innovative and promising cancer treatment. 

Do you want to support the cancer research of my team directly by a gift? Send me a mail (evelien.smits@uantwerp.be) and I will send you the information. Every gift helps.


Solid Tumor Immunology Group - Center for Oncological Research

Center for Cell Therapy and Regenerative Medicine

Young Academy


Campus Drie Eiken
Universiteitsplein 1
2610 Wilrijk
Tel. 032652654