April 30, 2012
A new study provides evidence that a critical type of immune cell can develop in human tonsils. The cells, called T lymphocytes, or T cells, have been thought to develop only in the thymus, an organ of the immune system that sits on the heart. The study could improve the understanding of T-cell cancers and autoimmune diseases, and how stem-cell transplantation is done. The study identified T cells at five distinct stages of development in the tonsil. The study also discovered that the cells develop in a particular region of the tonsil, in areas near the fibrous scaffold of the tonsil. Dr. Michael Caligiuri and Dr. Arick Forrest were interviewed.
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