Understanding Adaptive Immune System as Reinforcement Learning [article]

Takuya Kato, Tetsuya J Kobayashi
2020 bioRxiv   pre-print
The adaptive immune system of vertebrates can detect, respond to, and memorize diverse pathogens from past experience. While the selection of T helper (Th) clones is the simple and established mechanism to recognize and memorize new pathogens, the question that still remains unexplored is how the Th cells can acquire better ways to bias the responses of immune cells for eliminating pathogens more efficiently by translating the recognized antigen information into regulatory signals. In this
more » ... we address this problem by associating the adaptive immune network organized by the Th cells with reinforcement learning (RL). By employing recent advancements of network-based RL, we show that the Th immune network can acquire the association between antigen patterns of and the effective responses to pathogens. Moreover, the clonal selection as well as other inter-cellular interactions are derived as a learning rule of this network. We also demonstrate that the stationary clone-size distribution after learning shares characteristic features with those observed experimentally. Our theoretical framework may contribute to revising and renewing our understanding of adaptive immunity as a learning system.
doi:10.1101/2020.01.31.929620 fatcat:boxvqth7pfdxdcffhhsqcvuqtm