A biological perspective on immune response to drug treatment (intended and unintended effects)
UCL Institute of Child Health and Great Ormond Street Hospital NHS Trust
Objectives: 1) To present a basic overview of what the immune system is and how it works. 2) To use biological examples to highlight the intended and unintended consequences of drug treatment on the immune system
Overview/Description of presentation: The immune system is very complex and our knowledge of how it works is increasing rapidly. This has coincided with major developments in therapeutics, with an increasing array of immune modulators available for the treatment of wide range of biological conditions. This talk will describe in simple terms what the immune system is and how it works and then use a number of examples of how our attempts to manipulate the immune system have been both successful but also detrimental. Both positive and negative effects of immune modulation are not always predictable, but contribute to a greater understanding of the immune system and to future therapeutic developments. The impact of immune responses to therapies not given to modulate immunity will also be discussed. The talk will focus on examples in patients with HIV, Inflammatory Diseases such as Arthritis, Sepsis, Cancer and Stem Cell Transplants.
Conclusions/Take home message: The aim of this talk is to highlight how drugs, not necessarily directed at the immune system, can still involve the immune system. The combination of new therapeutic agents and advances in immunology is having a major influence on our approach to treating patients.