Live cell imaging in action: Killer T-cells hunt their target

Killer T Cell - The Cancer Assasin May 2015, University of Cambridge, NIH OxCam programme - Killer T-Cell Credit: Gillian Griffiths/Jonny Settle

In a recent video posted on “Cambridge University’s YouTube channel”, Professor Gillian Griffiths and co-workers prove how the Life Science Community can benefit from modern and innovative cell imaging technologies for understanding cellular activity.

In their recent study (1) and film (2), the research team captured real-time behaviour of Cytotoxic T lymphocytes (CTLs) hunting down, moving and killing cancer cells.

This study clearly illustrates the major breakthrough related to new high spatial and temporal resolution, multi-colour, 3D time-lapse imaging microscopy techniques, which image the entire cell volume and display cellular events at micrometre level.

Watch this fascinating video:


Killer T-Cell Credit: Gillian Griffiths/Jonny Settle . 


Professor Gillian Griffiths, Dr Yukako Asano and Akex Ritter – Cambridge Institute for Medical Research – Department of Medicine of the Clinical School (NIH OxCam programme with funding from the Wellcome Trust)

1) Ritter A.T. et al. “Actin depletion initiates events leading to granule secretion at the immunological synapse” (2015) Immunity 42, 864–876. DOI: 10.1016/j.immuni.2015.04.013

2) Body’s ‘serial killers’ captured on film destroying cancer cells – See more at:


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