Physiological organization of immune response based on the homeostatic mechanism of matrix reprogramming: implication in tumor and biotechnology

Med Hypotheses. 2014 Jun;82(6):754-65. doi: 10.1016/j.mehy.2014.03.019. Epub 2014 Mar 25.


It is accepted that the immune system responds to pathogens with activation of antigen-independent innate and antigen-dependent adaptive immunity. However many immune events do not fit or are even inconsistent with this notion. We developed a new homeostatic model of the immune response. This model consists of four units: a sensor, a regulator, an effector and a rehabilitator. The sensor, macrophages or lymphocytes, recognize pathogenic cells and generate alarm signals. The regulator, antigen-presenting cells, Тregs and myeloid-derived suppressor cells, evaluate the signals and together with sensor cells program the effector. The effector, programmed macrophages and lymphocytes, eliminate the pathogenic cells. The rehabilitator, M2 macrophages, restrict inflammation, provide angiogenesis and reparation of tissue damage, and restore the homeostasis. We suggest the terms "immune matrix" for a biological template of immune responses to pathogens and "matrix reprogramming" for the interdependent reprogramming of different cells in the matrix. In an adequate immune response, the matrix forms a negative feedback mechanism to support the homeostasis. We defined the cellular and phenotypic composition of a tumor immune matrix. A tumor reprograms the homeostatic negative feedback mechanism of matrix into a pathogenic positive feedback mechanism. M2 macrophages play a key role in this transformation. Therefore, macrophages are an attractive target for biotechnology. Based on our hypotheses, we are developing a cell biotechnology method for creation of macrophages with a stable antitumor phenotype. We have shown that such macrophages almost doubled the survival time of mice with tumor.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biotechnology / methods*
  • Feedback, Physiological / physiology*
  • Homeostasis / immunology
  • Homeostasis / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Immunity / immunology
  • Immunity / physiology*
  • Macrophages / immunology*
  • Mice
  • Models, Immunological*