Systems Immunology

To see the immune system with the eyes of mathematics – that is the goal of the department Systems Immunology. Mathematical models help to faster and better understand diseases that are associated with immune functions. Read here how scientists use mathematics to investigate chronic inflammatory diseases, the regulation of adaptive immune responses, diabetes, cancer irradiation and aging.


    Dr Azadeh Ghanbari

    Azadeh Ghanbari


    +49 531 391-55218


    Curriculum Vitae

    After getting my MSc of Physics (Optics) from Zanjan University, in Iran, I started my PhD in TU Darmstadt on April 2009. Under the supervision of Prof. Müller-Plathe in Theoretical Physical Chemistry Group, I was performing computer simulations on nanocomposites, using Coarse-Grained Molecular Dynamics method. Three years later I joined Prof. Meyer-Hermann's group in Systems Immunology (SIMM) department of HZI, where I started computer modeling of bacterial biofilm development.


    The formation of bacterial biofilm is responsible for severe diseases. Development and evolution of biofilm, as a system, depends mainly on the interaction of the cells, as agents, with each other and also with the environment. We develop agent-based models and investigate how the biofilm structure depends on the cooperation and / or competition of the bacteria, as interplay of their social and individual interests. We benefit from a close collaboration with experimentalists within HZI, where ultimately the computational and experimental results can be compared and / or inspired by each other.


    Ghanbari, A.; Rahimi, M.; Dehghany, J.; (2013)
    Influence of Surface Grafted Polymers on the Polymer Dynamics in a Silica-Polystyrene Nanocomposite: A Coarse-Grained Molecular Dynamics Investigation.
    The Journal of Physical Chemistry C, in press.

    Ghanbari, A.; Ndoro, T.V.M.; Leroy, F.; Rahimi, M.; Böhm, M.C.; Müller-Plathe, F.; (2012).
    Interphase Structure in Silica-Polystyrene Nanocomposites: A Coarse-Grained Molecular Dynamics Study.
    Macromolecules: 45(1), 572-584

    Rahimi, M.; Iriarte-Carretero, I.; Ghanbari, A.; Böhm, M.C.; Müller-Plathe, F.; (2012).
    Mechanical behavior and interphase structure in a silica-polystyrene nanocomposite under uniaxial deformation.
    Nanotechnology: 23(30), 305702

    Ndoro, T.V.M.; Voyiatzis, E.; Ghanbari, A.; Theodorou, D.N.; Böhm, M.C.; Müller-Plathe, F.; (2011).
    Interface of Grafted and Ungrafted Silica Nanoparticles with a Polystyrene Matrix: Atomistic Molecular Dynamics Simulations.
    Macromolecules: 44(7), 2316-2327

    Ghanbari, A.; Böhm, M.C.; Müller-Plathe, F.; (2011).
    A Simple Reverse Mapping Procedure for Coarse-Grained Polymer Models with Rigid Side Groups.
    Macromolecules: 44(13), 5520-5526


  • Prof Dr Michael Meyer-Hermann

    Michael Meyer-Hermann

    Head of Department

    +49 531 391 55210

    +49 531 391-55211


    +49 531 6181-5400

    +49 531 6181-7099


Audio Podcast

  • BRICS – Rechnen für die Infektionsforschung
    Die Mischung macht es – im richtigen Leben ebenso wie in der Infektionsforschung. Systembiologen am HZI und an der Technischen Universität Braunschweig mischen Laborerkenntnisse mit Computermodellen. Begleiten Sie Michael Meyer-Hermann virtuell an das BRICS und hören Sie weshalb es so sinnvoll ist, Biologie mit System zu betreiben.
  • Rechnen für die Gesundheit – Systembiologie bringt System in die Arthritis-Therapie
    Infektionsforscher arbeiten mit Zellkulturen, Krankheitserregern, nehmen Proben, messen und werten die Messergebnisse aus. Allerdings reicht das in der modernen Wissenschaft häufig nicht mehr aus – gerade wenn es um so komplexe Systeme wie uns Menschen geht. Hier kommen Computer ins Spiel: die Systembiologie. Hören Sie Michael Meyer-Hermann zu, wie er am Rechner die Jahrzehnte alte Therapie gegen Rheumatoide Arthritis auf den Kopf stellt...