MRC Human Immunology Unit
MRC Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine
CAMS Oxford Institute
Nuffield Department of Medicine
University College Dong Profile
- Ita Askonas Professor of Translational Immunology
- Founding Director (Oxford), CAMS-Oxford joint International Centre for Translational Immunology
- Founding Director (Oxford), Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences Oxford Institute (COI)
Human T cell responses against virus and cancer
The main objective of my group’s research is to focus on the functional aspects of the antigen specific T cells and studying the factors affecting T cells in controlling virus infection and cancer development.
For important human infections, cancer development and the course of disease is influenced mainly by the T cell response - while a robust and appropriate T cell response is beneficial to the host, a weak or inappropriate response can be ineffective or even have a detrimental effect. Numerous factors influence the quality of the T cell response to viral infections, predominant among them being the microenvironment of the infection site, the type of cells infected and the variability of the virus. By understanding the key factors required for efficient viral control by the T cell response in a number of different viral infections and viral associated cancer, we aim to identify targets to augment and control the immune response as a way of improving the outcome of in several important human diseases.