immune system

03/05/2014 - 10:54

The medical history of Europe has been punctuated by epidemics including plague, smallpox and influenza. This has driven evolution of elements of the immune system from Europeans and Rroma (Gypsies) - populations of different genetic ancestry but living in the same areas- to converge. Plague is a major factor that has shaped these converged immune system elements of both modern Europeans and Rroma. These are the findings of a paper in the current issue of Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences from a team of researchers from Spain, Romania, the Netherlands and India.


01/27/2014 - 13:54

Poor-quality sleep marked by frequent awakenings can speed cancer growth, increase tumor aggressiveness and dampen the immune system's ability to control or eradicate early cancers, according to a new study published online January 21, 2014, in the journal Cancer Research.


01/23/2014 - 07:21

A new study from Karolinska Institutet show that humans are able to smell sickness in someone whose immune system is highly active. This ability to smell health or disease occurred within just a few hours of exposure to a bacterial endotoxin.


11/21/2013 - 11:51

Of the two major types of HIV, only one, HIV-1, typically causes AIDS in infected people who don't receive treatment. A study published by Cell Press November 21st in the journal Immunity reveals how HIV-1 escapes detection by essentially becoming invisible to a patient's immune system, whereas HIV-2 triggers protective immune responses in patients. This understanding of how HIV-1's ”invisibility cloak” works could lead to the development of effective vaccines against HIV-1.


11/14/2013 - 11:45

A team led by scientists at The Scripps Research Institute (TSRI) has solved a long-standing conundrum about the immune system and in so doing may have found a new way to boost or reduce immunity therapeutically. The discovery concerns an unusual protein, Themis, that has been known to play a key role in the normal development of T cells, one of the most powerful elements of the immune system. Exactly how Themis controls T cell development hasn’t been clear. But now in a report in the journal Nature, the TSRI scientists have described how the protein subtly but crucially ensures the maturation of T cells that are fit for active duty in the body.


11/14/2013 - 11:00

The deadly toxin produced by anthrax bacteria can hide out in human cells for days, invisible both to our immune systems and to the cellular machinery responsible for destroying proteins. The findings reported in the Cell Press journal Cell Reports on November 14th explain why antibiotics aren't always enough to cure anthrax infections.