Author(s): Swann J, Crowe NY, Hayakawa Y, Godfrey DI, Smyth MJ
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Abstract An understanding of the complex interactions occurring between tumours and the immune system is a prerequisite for the rational design of effective cancer immunotherapies. To date, attention has focused mainly on the role the adaptive immune system plays in controlling tumourigenesis, with conventional T cells, which recognize peptide antigens presented by classical MHC molecules, coming under close scrutiny. Accumulating reports now suggest that an additional T-cell subset, known as CD1d-restricted natural killer T (NKT) cells, also plays a pivotal role in modulating antitumour responses. Found in both humans and mice, CD1d-restricted NKT cells are a highly specialized cell type that, in contrast to conventional T cells, recognize lipid/glycolipid antigens presented by the non-classical MHC molecule CD1d. Several features of NKT cells, including their ability to rapidly produce large quantities of cytokines upon primary stimulation, make them ideal targets for developing anticancer immunotherapies. This intriguing cell type is the focus of this review.
This article was published in Immunol Cell Biol
and referenced in Journal of Clinical & Experimental Dermatology Research