New white blood cell variation is provocative cancer vaccine target

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They exist. Researchers from Newcastle University in the U.K. and colleagues have spotted a new type of white blood cell that, in response to some kind of external source, can activate a killing immune response in the body. This new human tissue dendritic cell with cross-presenting function gives scientists a great new vaccine target that they believe can combat diseases like cancer. As Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News explains, the finding is a big deal because scientists haven't known how to spot these special cells. Now that they do, they see new possibilities in designing vaccines for cancer and other infections with more precise targets in mind. Their research looked at dendritic cells from human blood and skin, and also mouse blood, lung and liver. Details are published in the journal Immunity. Story