The concept of immunotherapy was in infancy when the firstedition was written; since then, major advances have been made, not only withseveral prominent clinical trials, but also with the approval of cell-based therapyby the FDA for the treatment of cancer in 2010. These events resulted in agradually narrowing gap between early scientific knowledge and the latedevelopment of immune-based therapies. Consequently, the significance andmagnitude of these advances warranted a revision of this contribution; thisrevised edition will provide a deeper understanding of the recent advances anddiscoveries related to the function of the immune response and theirapplications in the development of novel therapies to treat human diseases. Someof the key discoveries during the past five years include: the identificationof the new subsets of helper T cells; new cytokines and their networks; andnovel signal transduction mechanisms. For example, the identification of TH17subset of helper T cells, in addition to TH1 and TH2 cells, not only advancedour understanding of the function of the basic immune response, but also raisedour awareness of the possible etiology and pathogenesis of diseases such asallergy, asthma, rheumatoid arthritis, and other auto-immune/immune systembased diseases. The newly identified powerful cytokine networks, that regulateboth innate and acquired immune responses, emerged as a result of the findingof new cell types such as innate lymphoid cells and iNKT. Identification of thenovel cytokines and their networks has advanced our knowledge of the mechanismsinvolved in the maintenance of tissue homeostasis, including inflammation andtissue repair during stress and injury. The development of HIV vaccines hasalso seen dramatic changes over the last few years. There has been a shift froma sole focus on T cell vaccines to a holistic approach that pertains to theinduction of both humoral and cellular elements. This entails the induction ofantibodies - both binding and neutralizing - to prevent infection. The cellularvaccination produces a safety net of CD8+ T-cell responses to suppress thereplication of the virus in the infected patients, and both of the effectorarms are aided by helper T cells. From the perspective of clinicalapplications, significant advances have also been made in: oral immunotherapyfor allergic disease, the possible treatment of HIV infection, the developmentof new monoclonal antibodies and their fragments to treat human diseases, andimmune cell based therapies for cancer.
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