PhD defence T. (Tridib) Das
- Prof.dr. R.W. Hendriks
- Prof.dr. B.N.M. Lambrecht
On Wednesday 24 February 2021, T. Das will defend his PhD dissertation, entitled: ‘An act of balance: A20/TNFAIP3 in dendritic cells is essential to prevent autoimmunity’.
The dendritic cell is an important cell in our immune system. It decides whether the immune system needs to be activated and fight against invaders, or whether it should stay calm and be tolerant. The A20/Tnfaip3 protein is a protein that helps for any immune cell to become calmer, once it has been activated. If a dendritic cell loses the A20/Tnfaip3 protein it becomes hyper activated which results in other activated immune cells. Accidentally all those cells can steer the body into a state of auto-immunity where the immune system attacks itself. In this thesis we used mouse models to genetically remove A20/Tnfaip3 from certain dendritic cells, which then spontaneously led to different disease phenotypes in mice. Since the immune systems of mice and humans are very similar, this teaches us the effects of activated dendritic cells and their immense power to change the balance of the immune system. We have looked at different consequential disease phenotypes in these mice such as liver disease, arthritis, and an overall immune inflammation similar to lupus. Our work has shown that future therapies for autoimmune disorders may target to calm the activity of dendritic cells, for example by proteins that mimic the function of A20/Tnfaip3.
Due to corona, the PhD defences do not take place publicly in the usual way in the Senate Hall or in the Professor Andries Querido Room. The candidates will defend their dissertation either in a small group or online.