Brynja Kohler

Brynja Kohler

University of Utah
Department of Mathematics
155 S 1400 E RM 233
Salt Lake City, UT 84112-0090

Office: LCB 315
Tel: (801) 585-7657
Fax: (801) 581-4148





T-cell population models, autoimmunity, Multiple Sclerosis (MS).
I work with Jim Keener and Robert Fujinami on a mathematical modeling project of T cell populations involved in autoimmunity. We seek to gain understanding into the underlying physiological mechanisms involved in the onset and progression of autoimmune diseases such as MS.

The stretch reflex, clonus, muscle dynamics.
I began work on this project many years ago with Charlie Peskin at the Courant Institute, and David Levine at the NYU Medical Center. My master's thesis describes a physiologically detailed mathematical model of the stretch reflex, and demonstrates that reduced inhibitory inputs from decending pathways into the motoneuron pool can lead to the muscular tremor known as clonus. You can have a look, here is the postscript file: Master's Thesis.
I have recently been revisiting this project -- trying to make improvements to the model so that it can be useful as a simulation tool, and as a starting point for some analysis of muscle behaviors. For example, I have replaced the muscle dynamics with Huxley's model (1957) based on crossbridge interactions.

Immune system simulation.
At the Hospital for Joint Diseases in New York City, I worked with Franco Celada and Phil Seiden doing simulations of immune responses to viral infections using IMMSIM (a computational model). Check out the various versions of this model here: IMMSIM or IMMSIM. Or read our paper: Kohler B, Puzone R, Seiden P, Celada F, "A systematic approach to vaccine complexity using an automaton model of the cellular and humoral immune system". Vaccine (1999) - 19: 862-876

Teaching Mathematics.
Immediately after college I joined Teach for America , and taught high school for three years at John Marshall High School in Los Angeles. I also taught high school math at St. Ann's School in Brooklyn for a year before going full time into graduate work. I have been involved in helping teachers train to teach mathematics as Mathematics Director at Teach for America's 2002 Summer Institute in NYC. Here are three links for you: NCTM, California Standards, and Kids Count.

Valentines Day Ball

AWM Utah

Journal Club

Loved Ones

Dave Wind

Amnesty International - UTAH

Iraq: Protect Human Rights, Take Action 

SMB Poster

IMA Cell Physiology Course: JUNE 16 - JUNE 27


IMA presentation