Comment on: A Validated Mathematical Model of Cell-Mediated Immune Response to Tumor Growth

Document Type

Letter to the Editor


Mathematics (HMC), Mathematics (Pomona)

Publication Date



Gowal et al. erroneously surmise that in ref. 1, we assume “unrealistic” initial natural killer (NK) cell levels of zero in order to generate the simulations of Fig. 4, and they conclude from their own simulations that NK efficacy is stronger than we indicate. We do not draw conclusions about the efficiency of NK cells from our model. Rather, we use the model equations as a possible description of the different cytolytic mechanisms of NK cells versus CD8+ T cells. These mathematical descriptions of the immune cell dynamics are validated when we show that the simulations can reproduce experimentally observed differences in the efficacy of innate and the tumor-specific responses.

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© 2007 American Association for Cancer Research