Researchers at the University of British Columbia have found the answer to a long-standing mystery about the activation of T-cell, which are white blood cells that are responsible for finding and killing viruses and bacteria that are introduced into the body. T-cells also participate in rejecting transplanted organs.
The research, which was published online in this month’s issue of Immunity, has identified the mechanisms that causes T-cells to activate and proliferate.
These findings give existing and future drugs a new target to boost the immune systems of cancer or HIV patients. These drugs may also be useful in stopping the T-cells from rejecting and organ transplant, and in preventing the immune system from attacking normal tissue.