Allison James Aih24

James Allison

Nobel Laureate; Regental Professor; Chair, Department of Immunology; Director, James P. Allison Institute, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center

James Allison, 2018 Nobel Laureate for Physiology or Medicine, is Regental Professor, chair of the department of immunology, and director of the James P. Allison Institute at MD Anderson Cancer Center. Among Allison’s most notable discoveries are the determination of the T cell receptor structure and that CD28 is the major costimulatory molecule that allows full activation of naïve T cells and prevents anergy in T cell clones. His lab demonstrated that CTLA-4 inhibits T-cell activation by opposing CD28-mediated costimulation and that blockade of CTLA-4 could enhance T cell responses, leading to tumor rejection in animal models. He proposed that blockade of immune checkpoints might be a powerful strategy for therapy of many cancers and conducted preclinical experiments showing its potential, establishing the field of immune checkpoint blockade therapy for cancer. He seeks to improve current immune checkpoint blockade therapies and identify new targets to unleash the immune system to eradicate cancer. (MD Anderson is a 2024 Festival Underwriter)

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