Jules A. Hoffmann is Professor at the Institute for Advanced Study at Université de Strasbourg and 2011 Nobel Laureate in Physiology or Medicine. Since the 70s, Hoffmann’s studies have unveiled genetic and molecular mechanisms responsible for innate immunity in insects and more complex organisms up to mammals and humans. The big leap forward took place in the mid-90s with the discovery of antimicrobial sensors in the drosophila, commonly known as fruit fly, which overcame the prevailing paradigm that cells of the innate immune system are activated without any specificity or stimulating triggers. The still innovative approach of innate immunity offers a range of new ways to explore the interaction between infectious agents and host defense in plants, invertebrates and mammals, clearly inspiring dramatically different therapies to treat infectious diseases.
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