Motility in the Immune System: From Microscopic Movement to Macroscopic Function - Questions

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Judy: Do DCs “attract” T cells? How can we answer this experimentally or through modeling? What approaches can be used to understand cell-cell interaction/communication? What environmental factors contribute to determining the type of search/motion taken by T cells? How do we quantitate and model these environmental influences? What do we know about 2D vs 3D motion in other systems? Are there differences and are there models to assess these differences?

Luca: First question for discussion:

Should a T-cell be thought of an isolated individual or are there collective or population phenomena critical to perform their tasks?

Although it is natural to start simple and hypothesize that a process occur in isolation, is there evidence that T-cells behave in the same way if in very small numbers. Modelling approaches may change dramatically if movement processes need to account for interactions with other members of a population.

Second question for discussion:

How does a single T-cell move and interact with its environment?

Before venturing to model the movement a T-cell, it is important to understand how it moves over a substrate and what are the minimal features necessary to represent its motion. Is it a fundamental mistake considering a T-cell a point particle? What is the spatial extent of a T-cell relative to the distance it travels, or relative to the spatial heterogeneity it encounters? How does it move, what cues does it react to?


What is the role of chemotaxis of CTL within infected tissues?


What quantitative observations are available? What type of measurements have been done?​