Speculations on Some Fundamental Aspects of the Regulation of the Quantity and Affinity of Antibody Produced during an Immune Response

  • Zvi Grossman
  • Jacques Hiernaux
  • Richard Asofsky
  • Charles De Lisi
Part of the Lecture Notes in Biomathematics book series (LNBM, volume 32)


The biological processes responsible for the initiation and regulation of the humoral (antibody mediated) immune response are poorly understood, but it seems safe to say that they are probably rather complex in detail, if not in concept. The response to most antigens requires a collaboration and communication between several cell types (1) which may be mediated by molecular messengers (either antigen specific or non specific) (2,3) or by direct cell-cell contact as discussed for example by Bell (4). Such communication plays a role in the initiation, (5) enhancement and suppression (6) of the response and satisfies precise genetic constraints (7). Superimposed upon this level of control are more fundamental aspects of regulation which arise as a natural consequence of the recognition requirements of the immune system. Thus, the requirement that antibodies be able to recognize an essentially limitless variety of antigenic determinants, suggests that they also recognize one another. The recognition of antibody by antibody implies a network of interactions which was proposed by Jerne (8) to play a role in immune regulation. The consequences of the network hypothesis have been developed and pursued mathematically by Richter (9) and Hoffman (10) and are discussed in this volume.


Antigen Concentration Sustained Oscillation Affinity Variation Antigen Dose Plaque Form Cell 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • Zvi Grossman
    • 1
  • Jacques Hiernaux
    • 1
  • Richard Asofsky
    • 2
  • Charles De Lisi
    • 1
  1. 1.Laboratory of Theoretical BiologyNCIItaly
  2. 2.Laboratory of Microbial ImmunityNIAIDItaly

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