NW: Dynamical Mechanisms of B-Cell Selection and Charactarization of Protein Binding Properties: Theoretical and experimental investigations

Mammals possess immune systems to resist disease. In order to identify a foreign organism, such systems exploit the protein binding activity of antibodies. In dependence on the invader, highly specialized antibodies are secreted by suitable B-cells which are selected out of a large cell pool and induced to expand their population. The project aims at answering questions like: What are the mechanisms governing the selection of most suitable cells, and how are the selected cells improved during the course of an acute immune response? Furthermore, what recognition properties must a set of antibodies possess to be able to locate any invading pathogen? The project will pursue an interdisciplinary ansatz combining three subprojects in order to approach those questions. On the one hand, the dynamic behavior of B-cells in the tissues where selection occurs will be investigated experimentally and by means of computer simulations and data analysis. On the other hand, features of immune cell population dynamics shall be determined on the basis of mathematical models, utilizing the concept of an abstract space representing recognition capabilities of antibodies, the so called shape space. Finally, a shape space shall be designed from experimental data with the aim of characterizing and predicting protein binding properties.

Principal investigators
Or-Guil, Michal Dr. rer. nat. (Details) (Junior Research Groups (Biology))

Volkswagen-Stiftung (VW)

Duration of project
Start date: 07/2007
End date: 06/2008

Last updated on 2022-07-09 at 21:08