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Protective Immunity Group

Exploring the remarkable abilities of the immune system, particularly focusing on B cells.

Deborah Burnett

Group Leader

Every day of our lives our immune system is faced with a near impossible dilemma: how can it protect us from all the possible threats we will encounter during our lifetime while avoiding mistakenly targeting our own tissues. This includes threats like cancer which develop within our own tissues as well as a magnitude of possible infectious threats. Some of these infectious threats try to avoid immune detection by camouflaging themselves, while others can strategically mutate or conceal key regions of vulnerability.

The Protective Immunity Group, is dedicated to exploring the remarkable abilities of the immune system, particularly focusing on B cells, which generate antibodies that can effectively safeguard our bodies against various formidable threats. This knowledge is vital in refining the development of safe and potent vaccines targeting emerging diseases. Additionally, we investigate the antibodies produced by individuals whose immune systems struggle to differentiate between infections and our own tissues, resulting in debilitating autoimmune diseases, such as Guillain-Barré syndrome. Understanding these contrasting challenges will guide us in avoiding autoimmune diseases and help develop improved vaccines to combat future threats.

Research Team

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Selected Publications

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