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From the College of Natural Sciences
Scientists Capture First-Ever Video of Body’s Safety Test for T-cells

Scientists Capture First-Ever Video of Body’s Safety Test for T-cells

For the first time, immunologists from The University of Texas at Austin have captured on video what happens when T-cells – the contract killers of the immune system, responsible for wiping out bacteria and viruses – undergo a type of assassin-training program before they get unleashed in the body. A new imaging technique that allowed for the videos, described today in the journal Nature Communications, holds promise for the fight against autoimmune disorders such as Type 1 diabetes.

HIV Hidden in Patients’ Cells Can Now Be Accurately Measured

HIV Hidden in Patients’ Cells Can Now Be Accurately Measured

This human T cell (blue) is under attack by HIV (yellow), the virus that causes AIDS. The virus specifically targets T cells, which play a critical role in the body's immune response against invaders like bacteria and viruses. Credit: Seth Pincus, Elizabeth Fischer and Austin Athman, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health.

Until now, researchers haven't been able to accurately quantify a latent form of HIV that persists in patients' immune cells. This hampers doctors' ability to assess the effectiveness of a particular treatment and select better alternatives.

Center for Infectious Disease Named for Dr. John Ring LaMontagne

Center for Infectious Disease Named for Dr. John Ring LaMontagne

A research center at The University of Texas at Austin will be renamed for Dr. John Ring LaMontagne, a scientist who combated flu and other infectious diseases to improve public health around the globe. The renaming of the existing Center for Infectious Disease follows more than $7 million in contributions by the LaMontagne community of family, friends and colleagues in celebration of Dr. Montagne's work within the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Two Elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences

Two Elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences

The American Academy of Arts and Sciences announced this week the election of two new members from The University of Texas at Austin—mathematician Björn Engquist and biochemist George Georgiou.

UT Austin Researchers Evaluate Methodology of Ebola Vaccine Trials

UT Austin Researchers Evaluate Methodology of Ebola Vaccine Trials

Medical aid workers in full protective gearThe waning number of Ebola cases is good news for West Africa, but for those developing a vaccine for the disease, it means time is running short.

New Protein Booster May Lead to Better DNA Vaccines and Gene Therapy

New Protein Booster May Lead to Better DNA Vaccines and Gene Therapy

Scientists have discovered a new way to manipulate how cells function, a finding that might help advance an experimental approach to improving public health: DNA vaccines, which could be more efficient, less expensive and easier to store than traditional vaccines.

Silent Ebola Infections Could Be Key to Controlling Outbreak

Silent Ebola Infections Could Be Key to Controlling Outbreak

In a letter published in the Lancet medical journal on October 14, Steve Bellan and Lauren Ancel Meyers, speculate that Ebola may be silently immunizing large numbers of people who never fal ill or infect others. If so, they might bolster front-line health care responses to the ongoing outbreak. Learn more in our press release.

As Ebola Kills Some, It May Be Quietly Immunizing Others

As Ebola Kills Some, It May Be Quietly Immunizing Others

Ebola virus

As Ebola continues to spread in West Africa, it may be silently immunizing large numbers of people who never fall ill or infect others, yet become protected from future infection. If such immunity is confirmed, it would have significant ramifications on projections of how widespread the disease will be and could help determine strategies that health workers use to contain the disease, according to a letter published Tuesday in the Lancet medical journal.

Scientists Develop Ebola Vaccine

Scientists Develop Ebola Vaccine

Since 2007, Maria Croyle and her colleageus have been developing a vaccine for the Ebola virus. The oral vaccine has been shown effective in rodents and primates and may soon be ready for human clinical trials. Croyle is a professor in the College of Pharmacy and member of the College of Natural Sciences' Center for Infectious Disease and Inst...
Raising the Tail: Jim Allison's Pioneering Cancer Treatment

Raising the Tail: Jim Allison's Pioneering Cancer Treatment

This excerpt is from an article by Jenny Blair, published May 2, 2014 in The Alcalde: