Using lazy evaluation to simulate realistic-size repertoires in models of the immune system

Derek J. Smith, Stephanie Forrest, David H. Ackley, Alan S. Perelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


We describe a method of implementing efficient computer simulations of immune systems that have a large number of unique B- and/or T-cell clones. The method uses an implementation technique called lazy evaluation to create the illusion that all clones are being simulated, while only actually simulating a much smaller number of clones that can respond to the antigens in the simulation. The method is effective because only 0.001-0.01% of clones can typically be stimulated by an antigen, and because many simulations involve only a small number of distinct antigens. A lazy simulation of a realistic number of clones and 10 distinct antigens is 1000 times faster and 10 000 times smaller than a conventional simulation - making simulations of immune systems with realistic-size repertoires computationally tractable.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)647-658
Number of pages12
JournalBulletin of mathematical biology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 1998
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Neuroscience
  • Immunology
  • General Mathematics
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Environmental Science
  • Pharmacology
  • General Agricultural and Biological Sciences
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics


Dive into the research topics of 'Using lazy evaluation to simulate realistic-size repertoires in models of the immune system'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this