Unlocking the immune system to fight back against cancer

With the help of donations from the public, Dr Jane Oliaro, Peter Mac Fellow in the Immune Signalling Laboratory, has led research investigating the potential of the immune system to better identify, remember and kill invading cancer cells. Dr Oliaro’s research looked at how T-cells can be controlled to produce more cancer-fighting cells through a process called asymmetric cell division.

Understanding how asymmetric cell division controls the production of different T-cells means researchers can explain how the body can learn to manufacture all the warrior and memory cells needed to fight cancer.

The research was honoured in 2012 as one of 10 of the Best Research Projects by the National Health and Medical Research Council, the council’s annual acknowledgment of ten world-class scientific and medical research projects underway across Australia.

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