Trapping Autoimmune T Cells Helps Researchers Better Understand Diabetes and Other Autoimmune Diseases

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In Massachusetts, researchers from Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences and the Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering have found that they can attract and isolate diabetes-causing immune cells, offering hope for patients with the autoimmune disease. Autoimmune diseases like diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, and others, are caused when the body’s immune system attacks its own cells, but by using a biomaterial, biodegradable scaffold under mice skin, researchers were able to use it as a trap to capture the damaging autoimmune T cells. Researchers hope to further study how these autoimmune T cells are different from regular T cells to better understand autoimmune diseases and how to stop those damaging T cells from causing those diseases.