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K-State Today

September 27, 2016



National Academy of Sciences member Philippa Marrack to discuss award-winning T cell research as part of Division of Biology Seminar Series

By Sarah Hancock

Philippa Marrack, distinguished professor of immunology and microbiology at the University of Colorado Denver and department chair of biomedical research at National Jewish Health, will present her work on T cell recognition of antigens at the Division of Biology Seminar Series at 4 p.m. Friday, Sept. 30, in 120 Ackert Hall.

Marrack's work focuses on the specificity, function and survival of T cells and sexual dimorphism in autoimmune disease. The means by which T cells recognize foreign antigens are both confusing and unexpected. Unlike other cells, T cells react only with fragments of invaders — peptides, lipids, or even vitamin metabolites — but only if they are bound to a major histocompatibility complex protein. Marrack will describe how T cell receptors manage this task and explain the ramifications of the phenomenon for immune responses to invaders and in autoimmunity.

Marrack is a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator, a Royal Academy fellow and a member of the National Academy of Sciences. She has published more than 300 peer-reviewed journal articles and has served on the editorial boards of numerous journals, including Cell, Science and the Journal of Immunology. She is winner of the 2015 Wolf Prize in Medicine, along with many other prizes and awards.

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