Figure 1: A form of immunotherapy has the potential to stop allergic reactions.

Therapeutic Technique Inactivating Allergic Response

By Rideeta Raquib Allergic reactions are common issues caused by the dysregulation of Th2 cells responses towards allergens. Normally, Th2 CD4+ T cells produce cytokines in response to allergens, and cause chronic inflammation and mucus hypersecretion, among other symptoms. Although genetics does play a role, allergic diseases, such as asthma, occur after sensitization and effector/memory…

Figure 1: Shown here is an example of Scopulariopsis, a genus of fungi capable of living in the absence of soil, air, plant debris, and dung. A new species of this fungi was recently discovered in cotton plants in Hangzhou, China.

Combination Therapies Reduce Treg Functions in CHC Patients

by Caleb Sooknanan ’20 Regulatory T-Cells, or Tregs, are important contributors to the development of chronic hepatitis C (CHC) infections in patients. Oral antiviral agents are the most common treatments for CHC infections in most Western countries, while pegylated interferon (PEG-IFN) treatment is the standard therapy in many Asian countries. PEG-IFNs are interferons that attach…

Figure 1: Researchers at the Yokohama City University Graduate School of Medicine in Japan used computational fluid dynamics (shown) to analyze the flow distribution of anticancer agent into the branches of the external carotid artery during intra-arterial chemotherapy.

Computational Fluid Dynamics Can Be Used to Treat Oral Cancer

by Caleb Sooknanan ’20 Surgical procedures have often been used to treat oral cancer. However, these procedures can cause oral dysfunction — often in the form of speech and breathing difficulties — and thereby harm respiratory organs. To preserve organ function, intra-arterial chemotherapy (IAC) has become a valuable form of treatment. IAC releases more anticancer…

Figure 1: Pegylated-interferon (PEG-IFN) treatment is the standard therapy for chronic hepatitis C in Asian countries; it is sometimes performed as part of a combination therapy with ribavirin (RBV), but more research is needed to understand how Treg function is affected in patients.

New Species of Fungi Discovered in Chinese Cotton Plants

by Caleb Sooknanan ’20 Dr. Xiao-Lin Li and researchers at Zhejiang University in China recently discovered a new fungal species, now identified as Scopulariopsis gossypii. The species was found in the vascular bundles of cotton plants infected by Verticillium dahlia, a pathogen of economic importance throughout the city of Hangzhou. Scientists have already associated the…

Figure 1: This is an image of a typical asthma inhaler. With further development of MPPs, the drugs within these inhalers will be more effective than they are currently.

Nanoparticle Drug Delivery

Richard Liang 18’ Mucoadhesive particles (MAPs) are used as the primary method of pulmonary drug delivery since it was believed that they increase drug duration within the lungs. MAPs act by sticking to the mucus layers and are used to treat a variety of illnesses including asthma, cystic fibrosis and lung cancer. However, administered MAPs…

Figure 1: This is an example of a patient that shows symptoms of vitiligo. TRM cells were found to permanently reside in the affected areas and can be the key to long-term anti-tumor immunity.

Immunity to Future Cancers with Resident Memory T Cells

Richard Liang 18’ Skin cancer melanomas develop from melanocytes, or pigment-containing cells, and cause discoloration in various parts of the body. Patients with melanomas are also likely to develop an autoimmune disease known as vitiligo, in which the body’s immune system attacks melanocytes. This results in a patchy loss of pigmentation. Recently, in a study…