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2014 will bring readers of Immunological Reviews another exciting year with six issues addressing topical areas of Immunology that have seen recent significant scientific advances. Our internationally renowned guest editors have created line-ups of articles that cover their field broadly with each contributor being encouraged to present his/her unique perspective. Collectively, the articles in each volume will bring our readers up to date on the newest discoveries, ongoing controversies, and future directions in six areas of immunologic investigation. We have solicited articles from established leaders in each respective field as well as contributions from more junior investigators who are bringing fresh ideas to the attention of our community.

While immunotherapy was originally envisioned as the ‘magic bullet’ for the treatment of cancer, decades of fundamental investigation and trials in patients revealed the complexity of using the immune system to combat malignancies. The past several years, however, have seen increased applications of cell-based immunomodulatory therapies to treat cancer. The January issue of the journal is guest edited by Drs. Robert Vonderheide and Carl June from the University of Pennsylvania, whose work has focused on translating basic immune cell biology to new approaches for adoptive immunotherapy. Drs. Vonderheide and June have selected contributors for this issue who have similarly advanced the field, providing our readers for an understanding why there is now a resurgence of enthusiasm for the power of the immune system to combat cancer.

The March issue of the journal takes Immunological Reviews back to its historic roots with a volume focusing on the immunobiology of transplantation, edited by Dr. Megan Sykes from Columbia University. The challenge of preserving graft function in the setting of allotransplantation has been an area of intense investigation since the first transplant across major histocompatibility complex barriers was performed. Dr. Sykes is renowned for her work in manipulating the transplant recipient's immune response to donor tissue. She has commissioned submissions that will explore not only our current understanding of how allo-immune responses can be modified but also the newest approaches to prevent and/or treat rejection.

The third volume of 2014 will tackle the biology of regulatory cells, which function to dampen the immune response. Since the description of T-regulatory cells (Tregs), a lineage of CD4+ T cells characterized by expression of the signature FoxP3 transcription factor, the number of different immune cells known to exert regulatory function has increased dramatically. This volume will be guest edited by Dr. Andrew Caton from the Wistar Institute, whose laboratory established that Tregs are selected by antigen in the thymus and who has continued to make contributions to our understanding of regulatory cells in autoimmunity. The reviews will address the development and function of an array of these inhibitors of immune cell activation. The articles that Dr. Caton has commissioned will cover both the basic biology of these important cells and their possible use to ameliorate diseases caused by the over-exuberance of immune cell activation.

The mucosal barriers and the organisms that inhabit these niches in shaping the immune system and modulating immune cell responses are essential for immune system homeostasis. Our July, 2014 issue will be guest edited by Dr. Yasmine Belkaid from the National Institutes of Health, who is an international authority on immune cell regulation in the gut. Dr. Belkaid has invited other leaders in the broad area of mucosal immunity research who are creating a volume that will inform our readers about the newest developments in this important field.

Dr. Harinder Singh from the Cincinnati Children's Medical Center is an expert on epigenetic control of immune cell function, the topic of our fifth volume for 2014. While much has been learned through studies of the genome, recent work has underscored the importance of ‘marking’ the genome by modifying DNA and its associated proteins. These epigenetic changes are proving to be just as important as the genome itself in directing cellular responses. Dr. Singh's volume brings together contributions from international experts who will instruct our readers in the particular importance of epigenetics in the development and function of key elements of the immune system.

Our final volume of the year will be edited by Dr. Gwendalyn Randolph from Washington University in St. Louis, whose work explores migration of monocytes and monocyte-derived cells and the relation of these cells with the vasculature. This issue will focus on monocytes and macrophages, innate immune cells that are increasingly recognized for their diversity and distinct roles in directing immune responses. Dr. Randolph's volume will include contributions from leaders in the field who are directing huge advances in understanding the similarities and differences in sublineages of this important cell type.

We at Immunological Reviews are pleased to have assembled an exciting lineup for 2014. We hope that our readers will learn from the in-depth reviews of the broad topic in each volume as well as from the individual opinions offered in all of the articles. We encourage everyone to explore our website (www.immunologicalreviews.com) to browse through articles and to watch guest editor podcasts.