In 10 seconds? Scientists are making progress in learning how certain types of immune cells, called dendritic cells, can be activated in ways that can help kill cancer. These cells gather intel on potential threats–antigens–which helps bring them to justice.
Sounds cool! But can I get some context? Right away! Treatments that boost the immune system to kill cancer, or immunotherapies, have revolutionized cancer care in the last decade. Many immunotherapies used today target immune cells called T cells because some have the amazing ability to kill cancerous cells directly (here’s a digest on T cells). But T cells are quite particular and are frequently difficult to onboard onto the cancer-killing mission. While many scientists continue to search for ways to make T cells more cooperative, some scientists are turning to other immune cells for help.