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Ageing Res Rev. 2011 Jul;10(3):315-8. doi: 10.1016/j.arr.2011.01.005. Epub 2011 Feb 21.

Immunological hurdles of ageing: indispensable research of the human model.

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Department of Pediatrics, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA 15224, USA.


Census reports of many countries indicate continuing trends for the graying of their populations. For the United States alone, persons aged ≥65 years are projected to comprise over 20% of the population by the year 2050. In view of the special medical needs of elders, scientific investigation into the biological aspects of ageing is key towards the improvement of geriatric care for the coming decades. This special issue of Ageing Research Reviews focuses on advances in research on the immunology of human ageing. Herein are nine articles about the age-related alterations in both the innate and adaptive arms of the immune system, and about continuing hurdles in vaccinology. These articles point to a common theme that the immunological milieu in old age is substantially different from that seen in the young. This suggests that new development and/or innovation of immune-based clinical interventions for the elderly may need to be customized for their age group, rather than the mere adoption of therapies that have been designed for and/or tested for younger persons.

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