September  2009, 12(2): 323-336. doi: 10.3934/dcdsb.2009.12.323

A preliminary mathematical model of skin dendritic cell trafficking and induction of T cell immunity


Georgia Gwinnett College, Lawrenceville, GA 30043, United States


Department of Biostatistics, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC 27599, United States


Department of Microbiology and Immunology, University of Otago, Dunedin, 9054, New Zealand, New Zealand, New Zealand


Biostatistics Division, Yale University, New Haven, CT 06520, United States


Department of Mathematics, Lafayette College, Easton, PA 18042, United States


Department of Mathematics, Harvey Mudd College, Claremont, CA 91711, United States

Received  September 2008 Revised  April 2009 Published  July 2009

Chronic inflammation is a process where dendritic cells (DCs) are constantly sampling antigen in the skin and migrating to lymph nodes where they induce the activation and proliferation of T cells. The T cells then travel back to the skin where they release cytokines that induce/maintain the inflammatory condition. This process is cyclic and ongoing. We created a differential equations model to reflect the initial stages of the inflammatory process. In particular, we modeled antigen stimulation of DCs in the skin, movement of DCs from the skin to a lymph node, and the subsequent activation of T cells in the lymph node. The model was able to simulate DC and T cell responses to antigen introduction taking place within realistic time scales. The goal of such a preliminary model is simply to be able to capture biologically realistic dynamics. Future models can then build on this preliminary model in directions that can potentially allow not only for model validation, but for predictions and hypothesis testing.
Citation: Amy H. Lin Erickson, Alison Wise, Stephen Fleming, Margaret Baird, Zabeen Lateef, Annette Molinaro, Miranda Teboh-Ewungkem, Lisette dePillis. A preliminary mathematical model of skin dendritic cell trafficking and induction of T cell immunity. Discrete & Continuous Dynamical Systems - B, 2009, 12 (2) : 323-336. doi: 10.3934/dcdsb.2009.12.323

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