Immune System Plasticity and Failure in Response to Gravitational Changes - An Approach to Understanding Immunological Memory – Publicly Invited Research
- A02 Shinohara
- A02 Maekawa
- A02 Ohgami
- A02 Nishimura
- A02 Kawano
- A02 Iwase
- A02 Furuichi
- A02 Myung
- A02 Kitamura
|Research Subject||Immune System Plasticity and Failure in Response to Gravitational Changes - An Approach to Understanding Immunological Memory -|
|Research Group Leader||
The immune system is known to be affected by extreme stress such as microgravity in a spacecraft. The severe effects on the immune system are directly linked to such immunological disorders as elevated susceptibility to infections, allergies, autoimmune diseases and cancer. Although the immune system is believed have the plasticity needed to maintain its homeostasis, a comprehensive understanding of its mechanisms is still necessary.
In this research, we address the issue of how the immune system maintains its homeostasis against extreme stress, with particular focus on an understanding of immunological memory through elucidation of the mechanisms for its establishment, maintenance and failure in a stressful environment. Our approach will yield novel knowledge about the mechanisms that regulate the immune system, as well as strategies for living in space without any immunological failure.
We have already found that the phenotype of CD4+ T cells activated under hypergravity (2G) was different from that under normal gravity (1G). We will examine the detailed differences in the activated T cell phenotype and memory responses under different levels of gravity, and how these differences affect overall immune responses using model antigen immunization and several infection models. We will also evaluate the mechanism of translating environmental stress into immunological signals inside and outside of the immune system.