Five-year MRC programme grant awarded to University researchers

Thymus Immunology Research Lab celebrating their MRC programme grant renewal
Thymus Immunology Research Lab

Professor Graham Anderson and his team have been successful in renewing their MRC programme grant ‘Targeting New Mechanisms In The Control Of Thymus Function To Restore Balanced T-cell Production’. This five-year renewal represents a major investment from the MRC to support basic immunology research that has clinical relevance.

The Thymus Immunology Research Lab, based in the Institute of Immunology and Immunotherapy, works on thymus biology in the context of the adaptive immune system.

Starting in October 2020, the grant will provide an exciting opportunity over the next five years to study how the thymus controls the immune system in health and disease. Professor Anderson, a Professor of Experimental Immunology in the Institute explains how excited the team are to receive the funding: "What's particularly exciting about this next round of funding is that it gives us an opportunity to move in different directions."

While continuing with their basic immunology research, the grant will allow the lab to add a new angle to their research.

"For many years we've investigated basic mechanisms which help in understanding the biology, but by linking up with clinical colleagues here in Birmingham, Professor Paul Moss' lab in the Institute, Dr Alex Richter and Dr Adrian Shields in the Clinical Immunology service, we wanted to try and look at how the thymus operates in the context of diseases such as cancer, that are treated by bone marrow transplantation," Professor Anderson adds.

"The Institute of Immunology and Immunotherapy, led by Professor David Wraith, is an ideal environment for us to perform our fundamental immunological research, and then link this with our clinical colleagues for maximum effect."

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