News » Archives » August 2020

How T-cell targets look in three dimensions may facilitate new cancer vaccines

Author: Deanna Csomo McCool

T-cells, which hunt for traces of disease within other cells, work by identifying fragments of outsider proteins on a diseased cell’s surface and then go in for the literal kill.

With cancer, some of the mutated fragments of outsider proteins, called neoepitopes, can be recognized by T-cells and are ideal candidates for cancer vaccines. Unfortunately, those candidates are difficult to predict from genetic data alone.

A study published this month in Nature Chemical Biology by Brian Baker, the Rev. John A. Zahm Professor of Structural Biology and chair of the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Notre Dame, and collaborator Alexandre Harari at the Ludwig Institute for Cancer Research at the University of Lausanne (UNIL) in Lausanne, Switzerland shows that to improve those predictions and develop cancer vaccines, researchers need to think more about what neoepitopes look like in three dimensions.

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I am Here: Kelley M. H. Young

Author: Gwen O'Brien, NDWorks

Editor’s note: As classes resume on campus during this unprecedented time, faculty and staff members are, as always, HERE for Notre Dame students. Whether work is done physically on campus or remotely, the collective purpose remains to offer an unsurpassed undergraduate education that nurtures the mind, body and spirit; and to advance human understanding through scholarship, research and post-baccalaureate programs that heal, unify and enlighten. 

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Melander Lab Reports Compound that Increases Antibiotic Efficacy for MRSA

Author: Rebecca Hicks

Christian Melander, George & Winifred Clark Professor of Chemistry & Biochemistry, and Roberta Melander, Research Associate Professor, with Professor Cassandra Quave and colleagues from Emory University, have reported new research showing that an extract from the American beautyberry plant increases the efficacy of certain antibiotics in the treatment of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).

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