PLS-Design is focused on the modulation of T cell response in the immune system. T cells act like guides of the immune system. Their interactions can direct the immune response towards the generation of IgE-type antibodies and allergy reactions or IgG-type mediated inflammation or supression of any immune reaction. The suppressing action is executed by regulatory T cells. We believe that controlling an interconnected network at one single point is carrying the risk of triggering backup pathways, diverting the reactions in unwanted directions.
The difficulty lies, not in the new ideas, but in escaping from the old ones… – John Maynard Keynes
Therefore, PLS-Design is using interference of signals at multiple levels to modulate T cells towards inducing tolerance.
We interfere with signal pathways on multiple levels:
- Controlling gene transcription/expression control – e.g. inhibition of TNF-related signals by salicylate
- Blocking receptor signal transmission – e.g. inhibition of IL-4R by competitive IL-4 mutein
- Supressing peripheral danger signals – e.g. effective depletion of complement C3
The signal interference is acheived by using local release of active substances from hydrogels to ensure a constant presence of suitable concentrations of inhibitors over the time necessary for tolerance induction, e.g. 1-5 days. Small molecules diffuse into cells to block the gene transcription, biologicals are used to interfere with receptor signalling and complement is depleted by activation of complement C3 with a patent protected human Cobra venom factor analog.
The natural adjuvant complement C3 can also be used to improve vaccinations. For more information see our page “Novel Adjuvants”.
The immune system is a multi-layered network of interconnected players – PLS-Design is using a multi-level approaches for its modulation of T cells.