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Invariant natural killer T cells (iNKT cells) are a small subset of T lymphocytes that are equipped with various immunoregulatory cytokines and cytotoxic effector molecules. Immune responses can be modulated efficiently by their interaction with other cells of the innate and adaptive immune system. Also, iNKT cells can promote apoptosis of malignant cells. Therefore, iNKT cells play a particular role in infectious diseases, malignant diseases, autoimmunity and alloimmunity. After allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation, iNKT cells induce immune tolerance and promote graft-versus-tumor effects. Recent advances in automated cell processing under good manufacturing practice (GMP) conditions and genetic modifications of effector cells pave the way for clinical translation of iNKT cell therapy.


Dominik Schneidawind. Invariant natural killer T cells : Cellular immune regulators with cytotoxic potential]. Der Pathologe. 2020 Dec;41(Suppl 2):134-137

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PMID: 33156364

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