Kathryn Wood is Professor of Immunology at the Nuffield Department of Surgical Sciences at University of Oxford. Immune regulation in the context of inducing and maintaining tolerance to alloantigens in vivo has been the focus of her research programme for the past 20 years. Her team was the first to identify a role of regulatory T cells (Treg) in controlling the immune response to donor alloantigens after transplantation in animal models. She demonstrated that ex vivo expanded human Treg could control rejection of human allogeneic tissue (vessels, islets and skin allografts) providing proof of concept data for the ongoing phase 1/2a clinical trial of the safety of ex vivo expanded human Treg in living donor kidney transplant recipients; carried out in collaboration with Professor Giovanna Lombardi at King’s College London (www.onestudy.org). She has also shown that Treg and other immune regulatory populations such as mesenchymal stromal cells can protect stem cells from rejection when used as immunomodulatory cell therapies in vivo.
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