This report by University College London does an excellent job in reviewing recent findings on the underlying mechanisms behind immunotherapy. Published this past January in the journal of Immunity, researchers at UCL investigate the use of the transcription factors T-bet and Blimp-1 in promoting CD4+ tumour control.
Immunotherapy is the branch of cancer medicine that focuses on using our body’s immune system to identify cancerous cells and induce apoptosis (cellular death). While B-lymphocytes generally work to target and identify cancerous and diseased cells, T-lymphocytes typically initiate the apoptotic cascade and induce the diseased cells’ death. The original study focuses on how we can promote CD4+ T-lymphocytic cell development, activating them to be able to induce apoptosis in cancerous cells in mice.
Overall, the report provides a clear and concise summary of the findings from the original research. The background information needed to understand the basics behind immunotherapeutic techniques is accurately described and concepts are simplified well for the lay audience. The review further makes good use of direct quotes from the researchers to adequately relay the authors’ perspectives and opinions. Furthermore, the reviewers never provide personal opinions and maintain objectiveness throughout the article using the 3rd person. The review concludes logically, using quotes from a scientist outside of the original research to independently verify the importance of these findings.
Some minor details that reduce the overall quality of the review is an abundance of ads and a lack of outside sources. While most of the ads are at placed at the bottom, some are spaced throughout the article with one ad even being centered. In addition, while the background information surrounding immunotherapeutic techniques is accurate, there are no sources provided and information must be independently verified.
Despite the minor flaws, the review as a whole is very well written and effectively communicates major findings from the original research.
This news article was published in Medical Xpress, a web-based medical and health news website, and is based off of a research study that was published in a reputable journal, Cell Immunity. According to the news article, the research study has identified both a growth and transcription factor present in T cells that can convert the “helper” action of CD4+ T cells to a “killer” action similar to cytotoxic CD8+ T cells. The author does a great job of combining the main result from the research study with further commentary from its main researchers. The author also adds extra explanation of immunology terminology to help explain the impact of these findings. Furthermore, the author offers perspective from someone outside the research study who indicates that this new discovery has a lot of potential in the field of immunotherapy research.
Essentially, the news article is written very well. The vocabulary reflects the target audience and the author adds extra explanation just in case. There is more than one perspective of the research findings added and in general, the author is neutral and objective in stating what is known from the paper and also by providing quotes that indicate much is unknown and that this discovery is only a first step.
That being said, there is no author information. The author link redirects one to the University College London website. As well, the original research study is paywalled, so anyone without access to Cell Immunity would not be able to read more details and limitations of the study if they were interested. Despite some barriers in accessibility, the article is still written well and presents the scientific results in a fair manner. As well, the original research article is clearly linked. Thus, I give this news article a 5 out of 5.
The views expressed by the reviewers for this article are not endorsed or shared by SciFeye. The interpretation of the review of the news story using the SciFeye Index was done independently by two SciFeye reviewers. We encourage you to conduct your own evaluation of the accuracy and quality of the news story using the Index.