Centre for Inflammation Research

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BSI Communicating Immunology grant

November 2017: A 'Communicating Immunology' grant has been awarded to Iris Mair, David Taggart, Julia Dorin and Donald Davidson by the British Society for Immunology to develop new Science Festival activities with the theme of 'Denny and the T team fight cancer'.

Two players (representing a dendritic cell and a T cell) try to match forms representing antigen retrieved by the dendritic cell
In a role-play game, children play the roles of dendritic cells and T cells to team up in the quest to eliminate threats posed by infections or sick cells. Antigens retrieved by a 'Dendritic cell' from a sick cell at a tissue site is presented to a 'T cell' at the 'lymph node station'. In case of a matching antigen – T cell receptor pair, the activated T cell can go back to the tissue site and help eliminate the threat.

With the help of the BSI Communicating Immunology grant awarded to Iris Mair and colleagues, new outreach activities will be developed and delivered within workshops at Science Festivals and at schools. Children will follow Denny the Dendritic cell through animated videos and lively hands-on activities, to gain a basic understanding of the immune system and learn how fascinating and enjoyable immunology can be. 

The newly designed activities centre around Cancer Immunology and help explain how the cells in our body can recognise and eliminate both infections and cancer cells.