Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Front Physiol. 2011 Jul 11;2:32. doi: 10.3389/fphys.2011.00032. eCollection 2011.

Why Do CD8+ T Cells become Indifferent to Tumors: A Dynamic Modeling Approach.

Author information

  • 1Department of Physics, The Pennsylvania State University University Park, PA, USA.


CD8+ T cells have the potential to influence the outcome of cancer pathogenesis, including complete tumor eradication or selection of malignant tumor escape variants. The Simian virus 40 large T-antigen (Tag) oncoprotein promotes tumor formation in Tag-transgenic mice and also provides multiple target determinants (sites) for responding CD8+ T cells in C57BL/6 (H-2(b)) mice. To understand the in vivo quantitative dynamics of CD8+ T cells after encountering Tag, we constructed a dynamic model from in vivo-generated data to simulate the interactions between Tag-expressing cells and CD8+ T cells in distinct scenarios including immunization of wild-type C57BL/6 mice and of Tag-transgenic mice that develop various tumors. In these scenarios the model successfully reproduces the dynamics of both the Tag-expressing cells and antigen-specific CD8+ T cell responses. The model predicts that the tolerance of the site-specific T cells is dependent on their apoptosis rates and that the net growth of CD8+ T cells is altered in transgenic mice. We experimentally validate both predictions. Our results indicate that site-specific CD8+ T cells have tissue-specific apoptosis rates affecting their tolerance to the tumor antigen. Moreover, the model highlights differences in apoptosis rates that contribute to compromised CD8+ T cell responses and tumor progression, knowledge of which is essential for development of cancer immunotherapy.


CD8+ T cells; T-antigen; apoptosis and proliferation rates; dynamic model; tumor

Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Frontiers Media SA Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk