About Our Work

At the heart of the Society for Natural Immunity (SNI) lies our unwavering commitment to advancing the understanding of Natural Killer cells and natural immunity.

“Our Work” delves into the core of this mission, showcasing the groundbreaking research, clinical applications, and collaborative efforts that define our society. Here, you’ll discover the depth of our scientific explorations, the innovations we champion, and the global impact of our endeavours. Join us on this journey through the ever-evolving landscape of natural immunity research.

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Overview of Natural Killer Cells

Natural Killer (NK) cells are an integral component of the innate immune system, playing a pivotal role in the body’s defence against infections and malignant cells. These cells possess the unique ability to recognise and eliminate virally infected and tumour cells without prior sensitisation. Their distinct characteristics differentiate them from other immune cells, primarily due to their cytotoxic capabilities and their capacity to release cytokines, which can modulate adaptive immune responses.

Advances in Natural Killer Cells Research

Over the years, research on NK cells has unveiled remarkable insights, shedding light on their diverse functions and regulatory mechanisms. Some of the recent breakthroughs in the field include:

  • Identification of NK Cell Subsets: Scientists have classified NK cells into distinct subsets based on their functionality and surface markers, allowing for more targeted research and therapeutic strategies.
  • NK Cell Memory: Traditionally believed to lack memory, recent studies suggest certain stimuli can induce a memory-like response in NK cells, opening avenues for vaccine development.
  • Regulation Mechanisms: Discoveries related to how NK cells are regulated, both in activation and inhibition, have deepened our understanding of their role in immune responses.

Applications in Clinical Practice

NK cells have emerged as potent agents in immunotherapeutic strategies, particularly in the realm of oncology:

  • NK Cell Therapy for Cancer: Enhanced NK cells can be infused into patients to target and destroy tumour cells. Several clinical trials have shown promising results, especially in haematological malignancies.
  • Combination Therapies: NK cells are being studied in combination with other treatments, such as chemotherapy or checkpoint inhibitors, to enhance their therapeutic potential.
  • Autoimmune Diseases: Due to their regulatory functions, NK cells are being explored as potential treatments for autoimmune diseases by modulating immune responses.