Researchers in a new study have said that fever makes the bodies more resilient to cancer by increasing and strengthening a particular group of cells in the immune system.
According to medicalnewstoday.com, the finding may exist for now at a theoretical stage, but it is being touted as one route to immunotherapy against cancer.
In the study published in the journal, The Quarterly Review of Biology, researchers from Nicolaus Copernicus University in Poland argued that there was a strong case for their hypothesis as they were not the first to propose that the immune system increases resilience to cancer each time the body fights an infectious fever.
They wrote that “Several hypotheses have been presented thus far and recent debates have pointed to the effect of fever on innate and adaptive immune functions.”
They also suggested that the cells should be investigated for use in immunotherapy, which was a treatment approach that recruits and boosts the immune system to fight disease.
The authors proposed that a better understanding of how fever interacts with gamma-delta T cells could reveal the larger impact and the clinical benefits of this relationship.
In the study paper, the researchers reviewed published research and data from experiments and thus argued that fever plays a “key role” in increasing gamma-delta T cells and enhancing their “immune anti-tumor competence” over a person’s lifespan.
They stressed that repeated fever responses to acute infection increase the ability of gamma-delta T cells to spot abnormal cells and cultivate environments that destroy them.
The study authors noted that an infectious fever is a “defensive and adaptive reaction” by the immune system, which is triggered when the immune system encounters a particular molecular pattern, such as that of a virus or bacterium.