York Computational Immunology Laboratory brings together the expertise of eight principal investigators spanning the Departments of Electronics, Biology/HYMS, Computer Science and Mathematics in the emerging area of systems immunology, pioneering the application of multi-dimensional, multi-scale (MDMS) modelling to solve immunological problems. Historically modelling has been used to recreate known biology, in contrast we have utilised simulation modelling to address the unknown and generate novel hypotheses that can be tested experimentally. In this application we will further develop and utilise MDMS modelling technology combining mathematical approaches with “rich”agent based modelling to address key mechanistic questions in immunology including molecular mechanisms driving the generation and resolution of inflammatory pathology. YCIL will develop a collaborative research environment, will develop and support open tools for modelling and demonstrate leadership through holding an international workshop in 2014 on systems immunology. We will apply computational approaches to understand mechanisms driving immune tissue function, homeostasis and remodelling and test the hypotheses emerging from the models in vivo. Through further developing our world leading expertise in computational and mathematical immunology we will generate multiple publications in high impact journals and be in a competitive position for YCIL investigators to apply for program and project grant funding opportunities.
The project established an integrated, cross-disciplinary research group focussing on aspects of computational immunology. We successfully ran an international workshop on computational and mathematical immunology in November 2014, hosted in York. This was attended by around 30 people, from Europe and the USA. We are in the process of finalising a draft meeting report for a journal. The meeting, and project overall, have given focus to the group. We meet once a month to discuss research, collaborations and grant applications.
Collaborations with GSK have been consolidated, and international links with Prof Ron Germain strengthened.
One PDRA was employed, Dr Kieran Alden for 12 months. At the end of the project they moved to a 2 month contract with Dr Marika Kullberg and Prof Jon Timmis.
SimOmics Ltd was established by Prof Jon Timmis and Dr Mark Coles to commercials modelling and decision support software in the Biosciences. This was established via pump priming money from the RIO, C2D2 and a grant from the Royal Academy of Engineering.
Engineering Biological Simulations with Uncertainty Quantification - PI J Timmis, EPSRC, 750k.
In Silico Temporal Model Suggests Lymphoid Tissue Development is Biphasic. K. Alden, P. Andrews, H. Veiga-Fernandes, J. Timmis and M. Coles. Submitted to IEEE Transactions on Computational Biology.