Creating immune privilege: Active local suppression that benefits friends, but protects foes

Andrew L. Mellor, David H. Munn

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debate

231 Scopus citations


Natural regulatory mechanisms prevent inappropriate immune activation to self and innocuous foreign antigens. Here, we adapt the notion of immune privilege, which was originally applied to transplanted tissues, to consider how antigenic tumour cells and chronic pathogens might exploit natural regulatory mechanisms to become non-immunogenic. This conceptual approach reveals new mechanistic perspectives that may help to explain the paradoxical persistence of tumours and chronic pathogens, and suggests new opportunities to improve immunotherapy to treat these chronic inflammatory diseases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)74-80
Number of pages7
JournalNature Reviews Immunology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2008


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology

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