Erick Riquelme

Assitant Professor

Erick Riquelme obtained his PhD in Biological Sciences at the Catholic University of Chile, where he evaluated mechanisms of interaction between the CD8 T cell receptor (TCR) and its ligand (MHC-I) in the tumor cell. Later he moved to the MD Anderson Cancer Center, USA where he developed his postdoctoral degree studying molecular mechanisms of resistance to antitumor therapies. In addition to assessing the molecular mechanisms that mediate the composition of the immune tumor microenvironment and its role in the response to antitumor therapies, unleashing the role of the tumor microbiota in shaping the tumor microenvironment and determining tumor behavior. Subject in which he focuses his research line where he evaluates the role played by the microbiota in mediating the interaction between the tumor and the immune system in the tumor microenvironment.

Erick Riquelme


Erick Riquelme, Yu Zhang, Liangliang Zhang, Montiel Maria, Zoltan Michelle, Wenli Dong, Pompeyo Quesada, Ismet Sahin, Vidhi Chandra, Anthony San Lucas, Paul Scheet, Hanwen Xu, Samir M Hanash, Lei Feng, Nadim Ajami, Joseph Petrosino, Christine B. Peterson, Michael P. Kim, Cynthia L. Sears, James Robert White, Laura D.Wood11, Anirban Maitra, Matthew Katz, Robert Jenq, Jennifer Wargo, Florencia McAllister. (2019). Tumor Microbiome Diversity and Composition Determine Pancreatic Cancer Outcomes. Cell. 2019 Aug 8;178(4):795-806

Chang K, Taggart MW, Reyes-Uribe L, Borras E, Riquelme E, Barnett RM, Leoni G, San Lucas FA, Catanese MT, Mori F, Diodoro MG, You YN, Hawk ET, Roszik J, Scheet P, Kopetz S, Nicosia A, Scarselli E, Lynch PM, McAllister F, Vilar E.(2018). Tumor Microbiome Diversity and Composition Determine Pancreatic Cancer Outcomes. JAMA Oncol. 2018 Aug 1;4(8):1085-1092.

Riquelme E, Maitra A, McAllister F. (2018). Immunotherapy for Pancreatic Cancer: More Than Just a Gut Feeling. Cancer Discov. 2018 Apr;8(4):386-388.

Yu Zhang, Michelle Zoltan, Erick Riquelme, Ismet Sahin, Kyle Ch ang, Zhengyu Jiang, Jianhua Ling, Sonal Gupta, William Horne, Melissa Pruski, Huamin Wang, Shao-Cong Sun, Guillermina Lozano, Paul Chiao, Anirban Maitra, Steven D. Leach, Jay K. Kolls, Eduardo Vilar Sanchez, Timothy C. Wang, Jennifer M. Bailey and Florencia McAllister. (2018). Gastroenterology. 2018 Jul; 155(1):210-223.

Gopalakrishnan V, Spencer CN, Nezi L, Reuben A, Andrews MC, Karpinets TV, Prieto PA, Vicente D, Hoffman K, Wei SC, Cogdill AP, Zhao L, Hudgens CW, Hutchinson DS, Manzo T, Petaccia de Macedo M, Cotechini T, Kumar T, Chen WS, Reddy SM, Sloane RS, Galloway-Pena J, Jiang H, Chen PL, Shpall EJ, Rezvani K, Alousi AM, Chemaly RF, Shelburne S, Vence LM, Okhuysen PC, Jensen VB, Swennes AG, McAllister F, Riquelme-Sanchez EM, Zhang Y, Le Chatelier E, Zitvogel L, Pons N, Austin-Breneman JL, Haydu LE, Burton EM, Gardner JM, Sirmans E, Hu J, Lazar AJ, Tsujikawa T, Diab A, Tawbi H, Glitza IC, Hwu WJ, Patel SP, Woodman SE, Amaria RN, Davies MA, Gershenwald JE, Hwu P, Lee JE, Zhang J, Coussens LM, Cooper ZA, Futreal PA, Daniel CR, Ajami NJ, Petrosino JF, Tetzlaff MT, Sharma P, Allison JP, Jenq RR, Wargo JA. (2017). Gut microbiome modulates response to anti-PD-1 immunotherapy in melanoma patients. 2017 Nov 2. Science. 2018 Jan 5;359(6371):97-103.

Riquelme E, Shen L, Wang J, Behrens C, Minna JD, and Ignacio Wistuba II. (2016). Oncogenic KRAS Modulates EZH2 Expression Through MEK-ERK or PI3K/AKT Signaling in Lung Cancer Depending on the Subtype of KRAS Mutation. Cancer Res. 2016 Feb 1; 76(3):675-85.

Riquelme E, Suraokar M, Behrens C, Lin H, Girard L, Lee J, Minna J, and Wistuba II. (2014). VEGF/VEGFR2 unregulated EZH2 expression and EZH2 depletion reduce malignant phenotype increasing the response to therapy platinum-based and against VEGFR-2 in lung adenocarcinoma. Clin Cancer Res. 2014. Jul 15;20(14):3849-61.

Riquelme E, Suraokar M, Nunez M, Gazdar AF, Byers LA, John V. Heymach JV, Mehran RJ, Tsao A, Wistuba II. (2014). Copy Number Gain of MYC Locus is Frequently Observed in Malignant Pleural Mesothelioma. J Thorac Oncol. 2014 Jul;9(7):998-1007.

Behrens C, Luisa Solis L, Lin H, Yuan P, Tang X, Kadara H, Riquelme E, Galindo H, Moran C, Swisher S, Simon G, Stewart D, Lee J and Wistuba I.I (2013). EZH2 protein expression associates to non-small cell lung carcinomas early pathogenesis, tumor progression and prognosis. Clin Cancer Res. 2013 Dec 1;19(23):6556-65.

Macanas-Pirard P, Leisewitz A, Broekhuizen R, Cautivo K, Barriga FM, Leisewitz F, Gidi V, Riquelme E, Montecinos VP, Swett P, Besa P, Ramirez P, Ocqueteau M, Kalergis AM, Holt M, Rettig M, DiPersio JF, Nervi B. (2012). Bone marrow stromal cells modulate mouse ENT1 activity and protect leukemia cells from cytarabine induced apoptosis. PLoS One. 2012;7(5).

Yang F, Tang X, Riquelme E*, Behrens C, Nilsson MB, Giri U, Varella-Garcia M, Byers LA, Lin HY, Wang J, Raso MG, Girard L, Coombes K, Lee JJ, Herbst RS, Minna JD, Heymach JV, and Wistuba II. (2011). Increased VEGFR-2 gene copy is associated with chemoresistance and shorter survival in patients with non-small-cell lung carcinoma who receive adjuvant chemotherapy. Cancer Res; 71(16) August 15, 2011.

Carreño LJ, Riquelme EM, González PA, Espagnolle N, Riedel CA, Valitutti S, Kalergis AM. (2010) T-cell antagonism by short half-life pMHC ligands can be mediated by an efficient trapping of T-cell polarization toward the APC. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2010 Jan 5;107(1):210-5

Pacheco R, Riquelme E, Kalergis AM. (2010). Emerging evidence for the role of neurotransmitters in the modulation of T cell responses to cognate ligands. Cent Nerv Syst Agents Med Chem. 2010 Mar;10(1):65-83.

Carvajal CA, Stehr CB, González PA, Riquelme EM, Montero T, Santos MJ, Kalergis AM, Fardella CE. (2011). A de novo unequal cross-over mutation between CYP11B1 and CYP11B2 genes causes Familial Hyperaldosteronism type I. Endocrinol Invest. 2011 Feb;34(2):140-4.

Riquelme E, Carreño LJ, González PA, Kalergis AM. (2009). The duration of TCR/pMHC interactions regulates CTL effector function and tumor-killing capacity. Eur J Immunol. 2009 Aug;39(8):2259-69

Artigas RA, Gonzalez A, Riquelme E, Carvajal CA, Cattani A, Martínez-Aguayo A, Kalergis AM, Pérez-Acle T, Fardella CE.(2008). A novel adrenocorticotropin receptor mutation alters its structure and function, causing familial glucocorticoid deficiency. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2008 Aug; 93(8):3097-105.


Evaluate the molecular mechanisms that determine the formation of the tumor microenvironment. The interaction between the tumor cell and the immune system and the factors that may contribute to the formation of this microenvironment, as well as the role played by the microbiota in shaping the immune system and its relationship with the tumor. Tumor microenvironment, immune system, microbiota, oncology.


Project: FONDECYT regular 1191526.

Title: Outlining the role of tumor microbiome in the development, progression and shaping the immune microenvironment in Non- small-cell lung cancer patients.

Sponsor institution: FONDECYT

Responsible Researcher: Erick Riquelme

Date of execution: 2019-2022



Florencia McAllister, MD Anderson Cancer Center at the University of Texas, USA

Kurt Schalper, Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, CT, USA


Dr. Bruno Nervi, Oncólogo- Professor of the Faculty of the Pontificial Catholic University of Chile, President of the Chile Foundation without Cancer.