Sunday, October 30, 2011

Nobel scientists to immune systems

The Nobel Prize for Medicine was awarded this year to the American Bruce Beutler, the Luxemburger Jules Hoffmann and the Canadian Ralph Steinman.

This has the Nobel Committee said Monday.

Beutler, Hoffmann and Steinman will be honored for their research on immune systems. Beutler, and Hoffman have the effect of the so-called natural immunity examined, and Steinman discovered dendritic cells, which play an important role in the immune system.

The three scientists were so closely involved in unraveling the workings of the human immune system. That protects the body against harmful bacteria, fungi and viruses, but also plays such a role in the early fighting cancer.


The first line of our defense is the innate immunity. This system generates inflammatory reactions and destroy invaders. Survive the first attack the intruder, then the specific immune system in action.

Called T and B cells produce antibodies and killer cells that infected cells rotate the neck. After eliminating the immune system remembers the intruder using memory cells.


Thanks to the discoveries of Nobel laureates known how antibodies are produced and how T cells recognize foreign substances in the body. Steinman discovered the so-called dendritic cells, a cell with antennae that scan the environment and pieces of foreign material to other immune cells present. To turn this cell specific antibodies in motion.

Nobel Prizes

The award is the first Nobel Prize for Medicine this year awarded. The next day follow in Physics, Chemistry, Literature, Peace and Economics.

The Nobel Prize for Medicine went last year to the Englishman Robert Edwards. He has in-vitro fertilization (IVF) program. In 1924 and in 1929 the prize was awarded to Dutch researchers.


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