Working the (immune) system
How four Rockefeller labs are joining forces to cultivate
treatments for autoimmune disease
As far as Ralph
Steinman is concerned, we are
alive right now because — among other reasons — our
immune systems are allowing it.
Tolerance in the face of diversity
In the case of autoimmune diseases like type 1 diabetes and lupus, scientists know that the checkpoint system has failed. Rockefeller University researchers are now studying how to prevent autoimmunity from occurring in the first place.
In the case of lupus, the immune system attacks not a
single organ but the skin, joints, blood and kidneys. As many as 1.5
million Americans have been diagnosed with lupus.
When an out-of-balance immune system attacks
the pancreas, the result is type 1 diabetes. Over 5 million people
worldwide rely on insulin injections to metabolize the sugars that
their own bodies can no longer process.