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T Cells Can Help Reduce Inflammation in Autoimmune Conditions

May 29, 2018 10:05:00 AM / by Stacy Matthews Branch, DVM, PhD posted in Tregs, Treg Cells, T regulatory cells, T cells

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New research shows bystander cell accumulation may play an active role in countering autoimmune diseases and curbing inflammation.

Autoimmune diseases are those in which the immune system attacks the body’s own cells leading to inflammation and damage of organs and tissues. Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is an example of an autoimmune disease caused by destruction of insulin-producing pancreatic cells (islet beta cells) by the immune system. Cytotoxic T cells that recognize islet beta cell antigens are the main immune cells responsible for the changes seen in T1D, but cytotoxic T cells that do not recognize these antigens are also found to infiltrate the pancreatic tissue. These cells have been designated bystander cells and have been thought to passively contribute to autoimmune-related tissue damage.

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Regulating T Cells May Help Them Kill Again

Jul 22, 2015 1:00:22 PM / by Maria posted in Cancer Immunology, cancer immunotherapy, research, Tregs, vitamin D

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Killer T cells launch an aggressive attack but don't last for long. Scientists are working on ways to draw a few back to a subdued memory form.

It does well to remember your enemies. When the human body encounters an infectious agent for the first time, it (often) successfully beats back the intruder by expanding in great number the immune cells that are specially equipped to clear out the pathogens and infected cells. After health is restored, a few "memory" versions of these immune cells remain, such that, should the infectious agent make a second unwelcome appearance, the immune response is quicker and more intense.

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