A translational team of experts in Europe say they have identified a protein which is produced naturally in the human body and can be used as a therapeutic vaccine capable of fighting a range of inflammatory conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, multiple sclerosis and allergic asthma.
"The implications of the findings are large as they shed light on an important way that the body combats inflammation and autoimmunity," says Shohreh Issazadeh-Navikas, the principal investigator. "Moreover, they establish a therapeutic approach for using the newly discovered protein as a treatment for multiple conditions." Issazadeh-Navikas is one of a group of investigators from Denmark, Germany and Sweden who joined forces to pursue the vaccine research, which was published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation.
The vaccine they created spurs NKT cells in the immune system, a particular type of T cell which can quell autoimmune diseases and can also play a role fighting Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, RA, AA, MS, type II diabetes and cancers.
"Our data offer a novel perspective on the physiological role of these cells in maintenance of tissue homeostasis and reduction of inflammation," said the professor.
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Vaccine cure for RA heads to human trial