Guardian of the Cell

Scientists have defined the structure and key features of a human immune-surveillance protein that guards against cancer and bacterial and viral infections
The identification of two human-specific variations in the protein closes a critical knowledge gap in immunology and cancer biology
The variations explain why the human protein is more precise and more selective than mammalian forms of the protein and why it targets certain types of DNA but ignores others
The findings can inform the design of more precisely targeted immune therapies against cancer and a range of immune-mediated diseases

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