α-Galactosylceramide: Potential Immunomodulatory Activity and Future Application [General Articles]
α-Galactosylceramide (α-GalCer), is a glycolipid which has been identified as a ligand recognized by a special group of immune T cells, known as invariant NKT cells. γ-GalCer can powerfully activate invariant NKT cells to produce immunoregulatory cytokines, including interferon-α and IL-4, and thereby exert a variety of subsequent effects on other cells in the immune system. Recent studies have revealed the mechanism of α- GalCer-induced iNKT cell-activation in immune responses to tumors and microbes, and in the suppression of autoimmune diseases. In this review, we discuss the potential immunomodulatory activity of α-GalCer and its possible future application for clinical studies in humans.
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Document Type: Review Article
Affiliations: Cancer Immunology Program, Trescowthick Laboratories, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, St. Andrews Place, East Melbourne, Victoria 3002, Australia
Publication date: 01 January 2004
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