Tübingen Ageing and Tumour Immunology Group
The research interests of the TATI group are described with reference to the keywords immunosenescence, vaccination, immune monitoring, tumor immunity, immunotherapy, longitudinal studies, human longevity, immunity and aging. Expertise in human immunology encompasses 14-colour polychromatic flow cytometry, T cell cloning and cell culture at different oxygen levels, confocal microscopy, proteomics, signal transduction, antigen discovery. We work in the clinical contexts of immune monitoring in “normal” aging, cancer immunotherapy, influenza vaccination, Alzheimer´s Disease. The TATI working hypothesis is that chronic antigenic stress contributes to the observed immune dysregulation in both aging, age-associated disease and cancer. In aging, important chronic stressors include persistent viruses; Cytomegalovirus is especially relevant in this regard. At least initially, all cancers are immunogenic; hence the chronic stressors in this situation are tumor antigens. Hence, the over-riding TATI mission is to investigate human T cell behavior under conditions of chronic antigenic stress in health and disease. Within the GERONTOSHIELD project, we will test the efficacy of novel adjuvants on models of human vaccine responses in in vitro culture models using cells from young and old individuals.