Cancer immunotherapy – Mattias Carlsten group

We strive to identify molecular causes of hyperinflammatory disorders and understand the role of lymphocyte cytotoxicity in health and disease. We aim to develop new conceptualizations of immunological disorders, and combine basic immunological and genetic insights with potent immunotherapeutic interventions for the development of personalized treatment of disease. Our ultimate goal is to harness fundamental insights of the human immune system to develop cytotoxic cell therapies to fight cancer.

Group picture of four people, standing on a staircase.

About our research

With the aim of reducing the use of chemotherapy and radiation and replace these treatment modalities with immunotherapy approaches, the Carlsten group hope to improve both outcomes and quality of life for patients with cancer.

The main research focus for the research group is to study how the immune system can be utilized to treat cancer. More specifically, the group focuses its work around basic biology and genetic engineering of Natural Killer (NK) cells with the overall aim of applying new discoveries in settings of cellular cancer immunotherapy. The group is also focusing on transplantation biology including therapies for patients with post-transplantation leukemia relapse.


NK cells, Cancer, Immunotherapy, Cell therapy, Tumor immunology, Genetic engineering, Hematology, Lymphoma, Leukemia, Transplantation.

Ongoing collaborations

The Mattias Carlsten research group has several ongoing collaborations, such as:

  • Richard Childs, NIH, USA
  • Andreas Lundqvist, KI
  • Björn Wahlin, KI
  • Michael O’Dwyer, NUIG, Ireland
  • Petter Höglund, KI
  • Yenan Bryceson, KI


Selected publications


  • SSMF Stora Anslag
  • Wallenberg Clinical Fellow
  • Jeanssons Stiftelser
  • Cancerfonden
  • Vetenskapsrådet
  • CSTP (for Caroline Leijonhufvud)
  • CSTP (for Filip Segerberg)
  • Clas Groschinsky

Members and contact

Group leader

All members of the group

Former members

  • 2021 Lisanne Schoutens – former Master Student (Karolinska Institutet)
  • 2020-2021 Kristina Witt, PhD – former Post-doc (Karolinska Institutet)
  • 2018- 2020 Mélanie Lambert, PhD – former Post-doc (Karolinska institutet)
  • 2019-2020 Angelique Fokkema – former Master Student (Uppsala University)
  • 2020 Anton Olander – former Medical student (Karolinska institutet)
  • 2019 Elise Mozin – former Master Student (UTC, France)
  • 2014-2019 Emily Levy, Biologist, former PhD student. Received her Ph.D. from George Washington University with Richard W. Childs (NIH) as main supervisor, co-supervised by Mattias Carlsten and David Allen (NIH)
  • 2012-2016 Monika Enqvist (Formerly Simonsson), former PhD student. Received her PhD from the Karolinska Institutet supervised by Karl-Johan Malmberg and co-supervised by Mattias Carlsten and Yenan Bryceson