"Mathematical Framework of Cellular Exhaustion and the Development of the Tumor-Immune Stalemate"
In response to prolonged tumor-induced stimulation, T cells will dysfunctionally develop into a state of exhaustion. The hypo-functionality of exhausted CD8+ T cells ineffectively combats solid tumors, creating a localized stalemate rather than promoting tumor eradication. In recent years, cellular exhaustion has been a promising target of modern immunotherapy efforts. Exhaustion based therapies attempt to “reverse” this exhaustion, thereby restoring normal effector cell function to better fight the tumor. In this talk we will describe a new mathematical model for modeling the dynamics of exhausted T cells as they interact with cancer. This model follows the development of an exhausted CD8+ T cell population and the subsequent tumor-immune stalemate. Analysis and modeling simulations provide potential future targets for immunotherapy.
Additional authors: In collaboration with Doron Levy; University of Maryland