Biology Seminar by Akane Hara on December 17, 2020
In today's biology seminar, we invited Akane Hara, a PhD student at Kyushu University, to have her talk about how pathogen infection can cause autoimmune diseases.
Normally, the immune systems attack germs like viruses and bacteria to prevent their growth within the body. However, these germs may mimic themselves to our body system so that they can avoid the attack. As a result, the immune system is not able to tell the germs from our body parts, and so even after the removal of the germs, it harms our body mistakenly. Wondering why - or when - this is the case, she considered ordinary differential equations of the compartment models for virus, helper cells, and memory T cells, by explicitly considering cross immunity. She presented a mathematical condition for which autoimmune diseases may be present and/or severe. We discussed possible extensions of the mathematical models. Thank you so much for the great talk, Akane! Personally, I was a colleague with her at Kyushu University and so feel a bit emotional that she's completing her PhD very soon!