Use of iNKT cells boosts tumor vaccination strategy
Dec 16, 2004 - 5:50:38 PM

T cell responses to natural infection are orders of magnitude greater than those observed in cancer patients in response to current vaccination protocols. Optimizing tumor vaccination protocols will require a deeper understanding of the signals that the immune system coordinates in order to respond to pathogenic infection. In the December 15 issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, Vincenzo Cerundolo and colleagues from the University of Oxford report a vaccination approach in mice in which intravenous delivery of a protein antigen plus a type of NK T cells, known as iNKT cells, enhanced the immune response and cleared an established tumor.

The authors demonstrate that the approach is effective when the vaccine is delivered orally or intravenously and could be exploited in future vaccination protocols aimed at eliciting immune responses against cancer and infectious diseases.

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