UV-Activated Regulatory Cells in Health and Disease
Location:WIMR, Level 2 Conference Facility
Associate Professor Scott Byrne, Head, Cellular Photoimmunology Group,
Charles Perkins Centre, Discipline of Infectious Diseases and Immunology, University of Sydney
Lunch will be provided at 1pm
A/Prof Byrne and his team are dedicated to understanding the cellular and molecular mechanisms by which sunlight manipulates the immune response. He has established an international reputation in the field of photoimmunology https://twitter.com/photoimmunologyand made numerous seminal contributions in this area, particularly his discovery that ultraviolet (UV) radiation activates a unique type of regulatory B cell. He uncovered a key role for platelet activating factor and serotonin in UV-BReg activation. This is allowing him to design novel intervention strategies aimed at altering BReg activation in the context of both skin cancer and a CNS-targeted autoimmune attack. Living on a sun-drenched planet has traditionally required adaption to and protection from the harmful effects of solar ultraviolet radiation. This has been, and continues to be, necessary to combat the rising incidence of skin cancer. However, emerging evidence supports a protective effect of sunlight against a range of diseases including asthma, depression, colitis, autoimmune diseases, liver inflammation, obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease. My laboratory is interested in the cellular and molecular mechanisms underlying sunlight-induced immune suppression and tolerance. Specifically, we are exploring how ultraviolet radiation from the sun activates regulatory pathways. Our ultimate aim is touncover the mechanisms by which sunlight mediates both harmful and beneficial health effects. By understanding and manipulating these processes, we believe this will enable us to live healthier lives under the Australian sun.