Fri, 29 Oct 2021
14:00 - 15:00
Dr Tomislav Plesa
University of Cambridge

Many scientific questions in biology can be formulated as a direct problem:

given a biochemical system, can one deduce some of its properties? 

For example, one might be interested in deducing equilibria of a given intracellular network.  On the other hand, one might instead be interested in designing an intracellular network with specified equilibria. Such scientific tasks take the form of inverse problems:
given a property, can one design a biochemical system that displays this property? 

Given a biochemical system, can one embed additional molecular species and reactions into the original system to control some of its properties?
These questions are at the heart of the emerging field of synthetic biology, where it has recently become possible to systematically realize dynamical systems using molecules.  Furthermore, addressing these questions for man-made synthetic systems may also shed light on how evolution has overcome similar challenges for natural systems.  In this talk, I will focus on the inverse problems, and outline some of the results and challenges which are important when biochemical systems are designed and controlled.

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