Tobias Freyberg Justesen has been employed at the Center for Surgical Science since April 2021. He graduated from medical school at the University of Copenhagen in January 2020 and then spend a year in Sønderborg working as a medical intern (KBU).

He has a great passion for the oncological field and the focus of his research is novel treatment modalities for metastatic pancreatic and colorectal cancer – patient groups with high unmet needs.

2021-:              PhD student, CSS

2020-21:          Medical intern (KBU) at Lægekompagniet Nordals, General Practice

2020-20:         Medical intern (KBU) at the Dep. of Internal Medicine, Hospital Southern Jutland

2018-20:          Junior Medical Advisor, Roche Pharmaceuticals, Denmark

2018-19:           Research Scholar, Dep. of Orthopaedic Surgery, Gentofte Hospital

2016-17:           Teacher in cardiovascular and respiratory physiology, SupKu

2020:, University of Copenhagen        

The Checkpoint study

Pancreatic cancer is one of the most lethal cancers, with high metastatic potential and strong chemoresistance, projected to becoming the second leading cause of cancer-related death by 2030. The only known curative treatment is surgical resection. However, 80% of patients present with a non-resectable disease at time of diagnosis.

The trial is a prospective phase 2 study in patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer investigating the efficacy, safety and immunological response of irreversible electroporation and immunotherapy (i.e. PD-1 inhibition).

The ELI study

The trial is designed as an investigator initiated prospective phase 2 study in patients with metastatic pMMR CRC to determine the efficacy and safety of calcium electroporation performed concurrently with irreversible electroporation followed by a PD-1 inhibitor (pembrolizumab). Furthermore, the trial aims to demonstrate how the treatment affects the local and systemic immune response measured by both blood samples and tumor biopsies. A total of 12 patients with metastatic, non-resectable pMMR CRC with primary left sided colorectal cancer will be included.

The RESET-C study

The trial is designed as an investigator-initiated, multicenter, prospective, single arm phase II study in 85 patients with stage I–III dMMR CC scheduled for intended curative surgery to determine the efficacy of immunotherapy using pembrolizumab in the neoadjuvant setting.

  1. Justesen T, Olsen JB, Hesselvig AB, Mørup-Petersen A, Odgaard A. Does intraoperative contamination during primary knee arthroplasty affect  patient-reported outcomes for patients who are uninfected 1 year after surgery? A prospective cohort study of 714 patients. Acta Orthop. 2020 Dec;91(6):750–5.

  2. Justesen T, Freyberg J, Schultz ANØ. Database selection and data gathering methods in systematic reviews of qualitative research regarding diabetes mellitus – an explorative study. BMC Med Res Methodol. 2021 Apr;21(1):94.

  3. Ralli M, Justesen T, Frevert SC, Schultz ANØ. Traumatic iatrogenic chylothorax after external electrical cardioversion. Vol. 9, Respirology case reports. 2021. p. e00695.

  4. Justesen TF, Orhan A, Raskov H, Nolsoe C, and Gögenur I, Electroporation and Immunotherapy — Unleashing the Abscopal Effect. Cancers (Basel). 2022, vol. 14, no. 2876.

  5. Justesen TF, Gögenur M, Clausen JSR., Mashkoor M, Rosen AW, and Gögenur I, The impact of time to surgery on oncological outcomes in stage I-III dMMR colon cancer – A nationwide cohort study, Eur. J. Surg. Oncol., 2023, doi: 10.1016/j.ejso.2023.03.223.

  6. Gögenur M, Balsevicius L, Bulut M, Colak N, Justesen TF et al., Neoadjuvant intratumoral influenza vaccine treatment in patients with proficient mismatch repair colorectal cancer leads to increased tumor infiltration of CD8+ T cells and upregulation of PD­L1: a phase 1/2 clinical trial, J. Immunother. Cancer, vol. 11, p. e006774, 2023, doi: 10.1136/jitc-2023-006774.

2021 – …        

  • 2.324.568kr. received in funds for the clinical study “ELI: Calcium electroporation in combination with irreversible electroporation and immunotherapy in patients with pMMR metastatic colorectal cancer – A prospective, phase 2 study”, from Helge Peetz og Verner Peetz og hustru Vilma Peetz Legat, Region Sjællands Sundhedsvidenskabelige Forskningsfond, Fabrikant Einar Willumsens Mindelegat, Else og Mogens Wedell Fond, Aase og Ejnar Danielsens Fond, P. Carl Petersens Fond og Sjællands Universitetshospital.
  • 2.646.748kr. received in funds for the clinical study “Checkpoint: Irreversible electroporation in combination with immune checkpoint inhibition, in patients with metastatic pancreatic cancer – A prospective, phase 2 study”, from Axel Muusfeldts Fond, Vissing Fonden, Fabrikant Einar Willumsens Mindelegat, Direktør Jacob Madsens og Hustru Olga Madsens Fond, Toyota Fonden, Fru Astrid Thaysen’s Legat for lægevidenskabelig Grundforskning, Aase og Ejnar Danielsens Fond, P. Carl Petersens Fond, Dagmar Marshalls Fond, Else og Mogens Wedell Wedellsborgs Fond, Arvid Nilssons Fond, Frimodt-Heineke Fonden, Region Sjællands Sundhedsvidenskabelige Forskningsfond.
  • 3.245.000kr. received in funds for the clinical study “RESET-C: Efficacy of immunotherapy in patients with MMR-deficient localized colon cancer scheduled for curative surgery – A prospective, phase II study”, from Danish Comprehensive Cancer Center, Axel Muusfeldts Fond, Læge Sofus Carl Emil Friis og Hustru Olga Doris Friis’ Legat, Kræftens Bekæmpelse, Dagmar Marshalls Fond, Frimodt Heineke Fonden.

Research keywords

#Pancreatic cancer #colorectal cancer #immunology #electroporation #immunotherapy