(Seminars, Academic events)
5 June 2012
3.30pm - 5pm
Venue: Room 501.505, level 5, building 501.
Host: Professor Rod Dunbar (School of Biological Sciences)
In medicine, lymph nodes have classically been of little interest, except as sites for malignancy.
Recent studies have revealed that lymph nodes are very sophisticated cellular machines, where swarms of cells navigate labyrinthine spaces to collect information and respond according to very subtle molecular programmes.
At the same time, a new drug has emerged that specifically blocks trafficking of lymphocytes within lymph nodes (Fingolimod/"Gilenya", now licensed for the immunosuppression of Multiple Sclerosis).
However this drug's mode of action is still unclear - partly because of our lack of understanding of the three dimensional micro-anatomy of the lymph node, and how lymphocytes trafficking through it interact with its structural components.
We began investigating human lymph nodes in order to understand how we might better target vaccines to stimulate T cells and our recent results have started to shed some light on the strucural components of human lymph nodes and their likely functions - as well as suggesting potential targets for drugs and vaccines.