Sam's projects

Samantha Lee, High School Intern, Berkeley Preparatory School, Tampa, FL; HIP-IMO Summer Internsip



Research Project:


"Optimizing the efficacy of cytotoxic T cells in immunotherapy via computational modeling"

topic: assess the viability of combining various immunotherapeutic strategies for treating melanoma spheroids using a math-based model of tumor cell-T cell interactions.

Sam discusses complex interactions between cytotoxic T cells and the melanoma tumor cells that were incorporated into a mathematical model in order to design optimized immunotherapeutic interventions.

August 5th 2016 -- Final presentation during the HIP-IMO Research Day.


Highlights from the final presentation:

Which therapeutic strategies are more effective: increasing the number of cytotoxic T cells introduced to the system or enhancing the T cell killing potential but using smaller number of T cells?

A mathematical model of tumor spheroid growth has been calibrated withdata from 3D in vitro data experiments of B16 melanoma cells (top-left). The calibrated model was used to simulate immunotherapy with B16-specific pmel T cells (top-right). Computational model was able to predict the number of T cells both regular and enhanced needed to eradicate tumor spheroids with intermittent sizes (bottom-left). One of the successful simulations is shown in the movie (bottom-right).


June 30th 2016, Sam discussed a PNAS publication by Wiedemann et al. "Cytotoxic T lymphocytes kill multiple targets simultaneously via spatiotemporal uncoupling
of lytic and stimulatory synapses"