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Autoimmune regulator (AIRE) is a unique transcriptional regulator that induces promiscuous expression of thousands of tissue-restricted antigens (TRAs) in medullary thymic epithelial cells (mTECs), a step critical for the induction of immunological self-tolerance. The past 15 years have seen dramatic progress in our understanding of how AIRE induces(More)
BACKGROUND Surgical procedures, including primary tumor resection, have been suggested to suppress immune competence and to promote postoperative infections and cancer metastasis. Catecholamines and prostaglandins were recently implicated in these processes, and in directly promoting tumor angiogenesis and invasion. OBJECTIVE To examine the integration of(More)
Aire is a transcriptional regulator that induces the promiscuous expression of thousands of tissue-restricted antigens (TRAs) in medullary thymic epithelial cells (mTECs), a step critical for the induction of immunological self-tolerance. Studies have offered molecular insights into how Aire operates, but more comprehensive understanding of this process(More)
Surgery may render patients susceptible to life-threatening complications, including infections and later metastases. Suppression of cell mediated immunity (CMI) and perturbations in the cytokine network were implicated in these outcomes. The current study assessed the effects of various surgeries on a wide array of immune indices, and compared patients'(More)
Orphanin FQ/nociceptin (OFQ/N) is a neuropeptide implicated in immunomodulation. Here, we show that endogenous and exogenous OFQ/N modulated the cytokine response to the bacterial superantigen staphylococcal enterotoxin A (SEA). Specifically, OFQ/N enhanced TNFalpha and IFNgamma transcripts in the spleen when injected prior to SEA challenge. Moreover, mice(More)
Surgical resection of the primary tumor is a necessary and effective treatment for breast cancer patients. For various reasons discussed, we believe that the short postoperative period is critical for eliminating minimal residual disease (MRD), thus markedly impacting long term survival. Unfortunately, both animal and human studies have shown that surgery(More)
Immune stimulation by biological response modifiers is a common approach in tumor immunotherapy. IL-12 was found effective in various animal studies, but clinical trials showed limited success. However, among other differences, animal models do not simulate psychological or physiological stress while employing IL-12, whereas cancer patients often experience(More)
Staphylococcal enterotoxin A (SEA) is a microbial superantigen that activates T-lymphocytes and induces production of various cytokines, including tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNFalpha). Previously, it was shown that SEA activates the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and augments gustatory neophobic behaviors. In the present study, it was hypothesized(More)
BACKGROUND & AIMS Omega-3 fatty acids (ω-3FA) attenuate postoperative immunosuppression vis-à-vis infection. Since immune-surveillance targets metastasizing cancer cells, we assessed the effect of ω-3FA consumption on 1) early post-operative Natural Killer cell (NK) cytotoxicity and metastases and 2) long-term recurrence-free survival, in two rodent models(More)
A significant role has been indicated for cellular immunity in controlling circulating cancer cells, but most autologous tumor cells seem resistant, in vitro, to natural killer cell (NKC) and cytotoxic T lymphocytes cytotoxicity. Addressing this apparent contradiction, we recently identified a unique leukocyte population, marginating-pulmonary(More)