Human Lymphocyte

Turning the Immune System into an Equal Opportunity Cancer Killer

Results from a small clinical trial comprising 86 cancer patients have prompted scientists to rethink how different cancers are classified and treated. The drug being assessed was Keytruda, a recent addition to oncologists’ arsenal of cancer immunotherapy drugs.  Unlike traditional chemotherapies, which poison and kill cancer cells directly, cancer immunotherapy recruits the body’s own self-defense machinery to attack tumors.  Although our immune systems are very good … Continue reading Turning the Immune System into an Equal Opportunity Cancer Killer

Ebola Virus

Virus Beware: Ebola Vaccine Successfully Developed

2016 was a tumultuous year in many respects, but it ended with a major victory against Ebola hemorrhagic fever.  Ebola’s most recent outbreak ravaged West Africa from 2013 to 2016, killing roughly two out of every five patients and tens of thousands of people in total.  Treatment options are limited once the disease takes hold, so researchers have been pursuing a vaccine that protects against … Continue reading Virus Beware: Ebola Vaccine Successfully Developed

Monoclonal antibodies

Blood test probes the immune system to diagnose Alzheimer’s disease

What can our immune system tell us about brain health?  Research from Rowan University suggests that the presence of particular antibodies, the means by which our bodies identify threats, can predict if mental decline is an early symptom of a neurodegenerative disease like Alzheimer’s.  The research team discovered a set of 50 antibodies that, in a proof-of-concept study, predicted whether a patient exhibiting mild cognitive … Continue reading Blood test probes the immune system to diagnose Alzheimer’s disease