WorldWideScience

Sample records for understand biological systems

  1. Systems biology for understanding and engineering of heterotrophic oleaginous microorganisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Park, Beom Gi; Kim, Minsuk; Kim, Joonwon; Yoo, Heewang; Kim, Byung-Gee

    2017-01-01

    Heterotrophic oleaginous microorganisms continue to draw interest as they can accumulate a large amount of lipids which is a promising feedstock for the production of biofuels and oleochemicals. Nutrient limitation, especially nitrogen limitation, is known to effectively trigger the lipid production in these microorganisms. For the aim of developing improved strains, the mechanisms behind the lipid production have been studied for a long time. Nowadays, system-level understanding of their metabolism and associated metabolic switches is attainable with modern systems biology tools. This work reviews the systems biology studies, based on (i) top-down, large-scale 'omics' tools, and (ii) bottom-up, mathematical modeling methods, on the heterotrophic oleaginous microorganisms with an emphasis on further application to metabolic engineering. Copyright © 2017 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  2. Systems biology approaches to understand natural products biosynthesis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Cuauhtemoc eLicona-Cassani

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Actinomycetes populate soils and aquatic sediments which impose biotic and abiotic challenges for their survival. As a result, actinomycetes metabolism and genomes have evolved to produce an overwhelming diversity of specialized molecules. Polyketides, non-ribosomal peptides, post-translationally modified peptides, lactams and terpenes are well known bioactive natural products with enormous industrial potential. Accessing such biological diversity has proven difficult due to the complex regulation of cellular metabolism in actinomycetes and to the sparse knowledge of their physiology. The past decade, however, has seen the development of omics technologies that have significantly contributed to our better understanding of their biology. Key observations have contributed towards a shift in the exploitation of actinomycetes biology, such as using their full genomic potential, activating entire pathways through key metabolic elicitors and pathway engineering to improve biosynthesis. Here, we review recent efforts devoted to achieving enhanced discovery, activation and manipulation of natural product biosynthetic pathways in model actinomycetes using genome-scale biological datasets.

  3. Systems Biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    IAS Admin

    Systems biology seeks to study biological systems as a whole, contrary to the reductionist approach that has dominated biology. Such a view of biological systems emanating from strong foundations of molecular level understanding of the individual components in terms of their form, function and interactions is promising to ...

  4. Systematic synergy modeling: understanding drug synergy from a systems biology perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Di; Liu, Xi; Yang, Yiping; Yang, Hongjun; Lu, Peng

    2015-09-16

    Owing to drug synergy effects, drug combinations have become a new trend in combating complex diseases like cancer, HIV and cardiovascular diseases. However, conventional synergy quantification methods often depend on experimental dose-response data which are quite resource-demanding. In addition, these methods are unable to interpret the explicit synergy mechanism. In this review, we give representative examples of how systems biology modeling offers strategies toward better understanding of drug synergy, including the protein-protein interaction (PPI) network-based methods, pathway dynamic simulations, synergy network motif recognitions, integrative drug feature calculations, and "omic"-supported analyses. Although partially successful in drug synergy exploration and interpretation, more efforts should be put on a holistic understanding of drug-disease interactions, considering integrative pharmacology and toxicology factors. With a comprehensive and deep insight into the mechanism of drug synergy, systems biology opens a novel avenue for rational design of effective drug combinations.

  5. Characterising the Development of the Understanding of Human Body Systems in High-School Biology Students--A Longitudinal Study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Snapir, Zohar; Eberbach, Catherine; Ben-Zvi-Assaraf, Orit; Hmelo-Silver, Cindy; Tripto, Jaklin

    2017-01-01

    Science education today has become increasingly focused on research into complex natural, social and technological systems. In this study, we examined the development of high-school biology students' systems understanding of the human body, in a three-year longitudinal study. The development of the students' system understanding was evaluated…

  6. Understanding Biological Regulation Through Synthetic Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bashor, Caleb J; Collins, James J

    2018-03-16

    Engineering synthetic gene regulatory circuits proceeds through iterative cycles of design, building, and testing. Initial circuit designs must rely on often-incomplete models of regulation established by fields of reductive inquiry-biochemistry and molecular and systems biology. As differences in designed and experimentally observed circuit behavior are inevitably encountered, investigated, and resolved, each turn of the engineering cycle can force a resynthesis in understanding of natural network function. Here, we outline research that uses the process of gene circuit engineering to advance biological discovery. Synthetic gene circuit engineering research has not only refined our understanding of cellular regulation but furnished biologists with a toolkit that can be directed at natural systems to exact precision manipulation of network structure. As we discuss, using circuit engineering to predictively reorganize, rewire, and reconstruct cellular regulation serves as the ultimate means of testing and understanding how cellular phenotype emerges from systems-level network function. Expected final online publication date for the Annual Review of Biophysics Volume 47 is May 20, 2018. Please see http://www.annualreviews.org/page/journal/pubdates for revised estimates.

  7. Achieving a Predictive Understanding of Antimicrobial Stress Physiology through Systems Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mack, Sean G; Turner, Randi L; Dwyer, Daniel J

    2018-04-01

    The dramatic spread and diversity of antibiotic-resistant pathogens has significantly reduced the efficacy of essentially all antibiotic classes, bringing us ever closer to a postantibiotic era. Exacerbating this issue, our understanding of the multiscale physiological impact of antimicrobial challenge on bacterial pathogens remains incomplete. Concerns over resistance and the need for new antibiotics have motivated the collection of omics measurements to provide systems-level insights into antimicrobial stress responses for nearly 20 years. Although technological advances have markedly improved the types and resolution of such measurements, continued development of mathematical frameworks aimed at providing a predictive understanding of complex antimicrobial-associated phenotypes is critical to maximize the utility of multiscale data. Here we highlight recent efforts utilizing systems biology to enhance our knowledge of antimicrobial stress physiology. We provide a brief historical perspective of antibiotic-focused omics measurements, highlight new measurement discoveries and trends, discuss examples and opportunities for integrating measurements with mathematical models, and describe future challenges for the field. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. "Toward High School Biology": Helping Middle School Students Understand Chemical Reactions and Conservation of Mass in Nonliving and Living Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrmann-Abell, Cari F.; Koppal, Mary; Roseman, Jo Ellen

    2016-01-01

    Modern biology has become increasingly molecular in nature, requiring students to understand basic chemical concepts. Studies show, however, that many students fail to grasp ideas about atom rearrangement and conservation during chemical reactions or the application of these ideas to biological systems. To help provide students with a better…

  9. Complex Systems Biology Approach To Understanding Coordination of JAK-STAT Signaling

    OpenAIRE

    Soebiyanto, Radina P.; Sreenath, Sree N.; Qu, Cheng-Kui; Loparo, Kenneth A.; Bunting, Kevin D.

    2007-01-01

    In this work, we search for coordination as an organizing principle in a complex signaling system using a multilevel hierarchical paradigm. The objective is to explain the underlying mechanism of Interferon (IFNγ) induced JAK-STAT (specifically JAK1/JAK2-STAT1) pathway behavior. Starting with a mathematical model of the pathway from the literature, we modularize the system using biological knowledge via principles of biochemical cohesion, biological significance, and functionality. The modula...

  10. Understanding channel tropism in traditional Chinese medicine in the context of systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Ping; Liu, Songlin; Chen, Gang; Wang, Ping

    2013-09-01

    Channel tropism is investigated and developed through long-term clinical practice. In recent years, the development of channel tropism theory has attracted increasing attention. This study analyzed channel tropism theory and the problems associated with it. Results showed that this theory and systems biology have a similar holistic viewpoint. Systems biology could provide novel insights and platform in the study of channel tropism. Some problems in channel tropism theory, including pharmacology and action mechanism, were investigated.

  11. Systems-synthetic biology in understanding the complexities and simple devices in immunology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soni, Bhavnita; Nimsarkar, Prajakta; Mol, Milsee; Saha, Bhaskar; Singh, Shailza

    2018-03-23

    Systems and synthetic biology in the coming era has the ability to manipulate, stimulate and engineer cells to counteract the pathogenic immune response. The inherent biological complexities associated with the creation of a device allow capitalizing the biotechnological resources either by simply administering a recombinant cytokine or just reprogramming the immune cells. The strategy outlined, adopted and discussed may mark the beginning with promising therapeutics based on the principles of synthetic immunology. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  12. Understanding XPO1 target networks using systems biology and mathematical modeling.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muqbil, Irfana; Kauffman, Michael; Shacham, Sharon; Mohammad, Ramzi M; Azmi, Asfar S

    2014-01-01

    The nuclear transport protein Exportin 1 (XPO1), also called chromosome region maintenance 1 (CRM1), is over-expressed 2- 4 fold in cancer. XPO1 is one of seven nuclear exporter proteins, and is solely responsible for the transport of the major tumor suppressor proteins (TSPs) from the nucleus to the cytoplasm. XPO1 exports any protein that carries a leucine-rich, hydrophobic nuclear export sequence (NES). A number of inhibitors have been discovered that block XPO1 function and thereby restore TSPs to the nucleus of both malignant and normal cells. However, natural product, irreversible XPO1 antagonists such as leptomycin B (LMB) have proven toxic in both preclinical models and in the clinic. Recently, orally bioavailable, drug-like small molecule, potent and selective inhibitors of XPO1 mediated nuclear export ("SINE") have been designed and are undergoing clinical evaluations in both humans and canines with cancer. The breadth of clinical applicability and long-term viability of an XPO1 inhibition strategy requires a deeper evaluation of the consequence of global re-organization of proteins in cancer and normal cells. Unfortunately, most of the studies on XPO1 inhibitors have focused on evaluating a limited number of TSPs or other proteins. Because XPO1 carries ~220 mammalian proteins out of the nucleus, such reductionism has not permitted a global understanding of cellular behavior upon drug-induced disruption of XPO1 function. The consequence of XPO1 inhibition requires holistic investigations that consider the entire set of XPO1 targets and their respective pathways modulated without losing key details. Systems biology is one such holistic approach that can be applied to understand XPO1 regulated proteins along with the downstream players involved. This review provides comprehensive evaluations of the different computational tools that can be utilized in the better understanding of XPO1 and its target. We anticipate that such holistic approaches can allow for

  13. Systems Modelling and the Development of Coherent Understanding of Cell Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verhoeff, Roald P.; Waarlo, Arend Jan; Boersma, Kerst Th.

    2008-01-01

    This article reports on educational design research concerning a learning and teaching strategy for cell biology in upper-secondary education introducing "systems modelling" as a key competence. The strategy consists of four modelling phases in which students subsequently develop models of free-living cells, a general two-dimensional model of…

  14. Using multi-criteria analysis of simulation models to understand complex biological systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Maureen C. Kennedy; E. David. Ford

    2011-01-01

    Scientists frequently use computer-simulation models to help solve complex biological problems. Typically, such models are highly integrated, they produce multiple outputs, and standard methods of model analysis are ill suited for evaluating them. We show how multi-criteria optimization with Pareto optimality allows for model outputs to be compared to multiple system...

  15. Systems Biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Wiley, H S.

    2006-06-01

    The biology revolution over the last 50 years has been driven by the ascendancy of molecular biology. This was enthusiastically embraced by most biologists because it took us into increasingly familiar territory. It took mysterious processes, such as the replication of genetic material and assigned them parts that could be readily understood by the human mind. When we think of ''molecular machines'' as being the underlying basis of life, we are using a paradigm derived from everyday experience. However, the price that we paid was a relentless drive towards reductionism and the attendant balkanization of biology. Now along comes ''systems biology'' that promises us a solution to the problem of ''knowing more and more about less and less''. Unlike molecular biology, systems biology appears to be taking us into unfamiliar intellectual territory, such as statistics, mathematics and computer modeling. Not surprisingly, systems biology has met with widespread skepticism and resistance. Why do we need systems biology anyway and how does this new area of research promise to change the face of biology in the next couple of decades?

  16. Student Teachers' Ways of Thinking and Ways of Understanding Digestion and the Digestive System in Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Çimer, Sabiha Odabasi; Ursavas, Nazihan

    2012-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to identify the ways in which student teachers understand digestion and the digestive system and, subsequently, their ways of thinking, as reflected in their problem solving approaches and the justification schemes that they used to validate their claims. For this purpose, clinical interviews were conducted with 10…

  17. How does undergraduate college biology students' level of understanding, in regard to the role of the seed plant root system, relate to their level of understanding of photosynthesis?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Njeng'ere, James Gicheha

    This research study investigated how undergraduate college biology students' level of understanding of the role of the seed plant root system relates to their level of understanding of photosynthesis. This research was conducted with 65 undergraduate non-majors biology who had completed 1 year of biology at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge and Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond. A root probe instrument was developed from some scientifically acceptable propositional statements about the root system, the process of photosynthesis, as well as the holistic nature of the tree. These were derived from research reviews of the science education and the arboriculture literature. This was administered to 65 students selected randomly from class lists of the two institutions. Most of the root probe's items were based on the Live Oak tree. An in-depth, clinical interview-based analysis was conducted with 12 of those tested students. A team of root experts participated by designing, validating and answering the same questions that the students were asked. A "systems" lens as defined by a team of college instructors, root experts (Shigo, 1991), and this researcher was used to interpret the results. A correlational coefficient determining students' level of understanding of the root system and their level of understanding of the process of photosynthesis was established by means of Pearson's r correlation (r = 0.328) using the SAS statistical analysis (SAS, 1987). From this a coefficient of determination (r2 = 0.104) was determined. Students' level of understanding of the Live Oak root system (mean score 5.94) was not statistically different from their level of understanding of the process of photosynthesis (mean score 5.54) as assessed by the root probe, t (129) = 0.137, p > 0.05 one tailed-test. This suggests that, to some degree, level of the root system limits level of understanding of photosynthesis and vice versa. Analysis of quantitative and qualitative

  18. What it takes to understand and cure a living system: computational systems biology and a systems biology-driven pharmacokinetics-pharmacodynamics platform

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Swat, Maciej; Kiełbasa, Szymon M.; Polak, Sebastian; Olivier, Brett; Bruggeman, Frank J.; Tulloch, Mark Quinton; Snoep, Jacky L.; Verhoeven, Arthur J.; Westerhoff, Hans V.

    2011-01-01

    The utility of model repositories is discussed in the context of systems biology (SB). It is shown how such repositories, and in particular their live versions, can be used for computational SB: we calculate the robustness of the yeast glycolytic network with respect to perturbations of one of its

  19. Molecular phenology in plants: in natura systems biology for the comprehensive understanding of seasonal responses under natural environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kudoh, Hiroshi

    2016-04-01

    Phenology refers to the study of seasonal schedules of organisms. Molecular phenology is defined here as the study of the seasonal patterns of organisms captured by molecular biology techniques. The history of molecular phenology is reviewed briefly in relation to advances in the quantification technology of gene expression. High-resolution molecular phenology (HMP) data have enabled us to study phenology with an approach of in natura systems biology. I review recent analyses of FLOWERING LOCUS C (FLC), a temperature-responsive repressor of flowering, along the six steps in the typical flow of in natura systems biology. The extensive studies of the regulation of FLC have made this example a successful case in which a comprehensive understanding of gene functions has been progressing. The FLC-mediated long-term memory of past temperatures creates time lags with other seasonal signals, such as photoperiod and short-term temperature. Major signals that control flowering time have a phase lag between them under natural conditions, and hypothetical phase lag calendars are proposed as mechanisms of season detection in plants. Transcriptomic HMP brings a novel strategy to the study of molecular phenology, because it provides a comprehensive representation of plant functions. I discuss future perspectives of molecular phenology from the standpoints of molecular biology, evolutionary biology and ecology. © 2015 The Author. New Phytologist © 2015 New Phytologist Trust.

  20. Toward High School Biology: Helping Middle School Students Understand Chemical Reactions and Conservation of Mass in Nonliving and Living Systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrmann-Abell, Cari F; Koppal, Mary; Roseman, Jo Ellen

    2016-01-01

    Modern biology has become increasingly molecular in nature, requiring students to understand basic chemical concepts. Studies show, however, that many students fail to grasp ideas about atom rearrangement and conservation during chemical reactions or the application of these ideas to biological systems. To help provide students with a better foundation, we used research-based design principles and collaborated in the development of a curricular intervention that applies chemistry ideas to living and nonliving contexts. Six eighth grade teachers and their students participated in a test of the unit during the Spring of 2013. Two of the teachers had used an earlier version of the unit the previous spring. The other four teachers were randomly assigned either to implement the unit or to continue teaching the same content using existing materials. Pre- and posttests were administered, and the data were analyzed using Rasch modeling and hierarchical linear modeling. The results showed that, when controlling for pretest score, gender, language, and ethnicity, students who used the curricular intervention performed better on the posttest than the students using existing materials. Additionally, students who participated in the intervention held fewer misconceptions. These results demonstrate the unit's promise in improving students' understanding of the targeted ideas. © 2016 C. F. Herrmann-Abell et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2016 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  1. Toward High School Biology: Helping Middle School Students Understand Chemical Reactions and Conservation of Mass in Nonliving and Living Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Herrmann-Abell, Cari F.; Koppal, Mary; Roseman, Jo Ellen

    2016-01-01

    Modern biology has become increasingly molecular in nature, requiring students to understand basic chemical concepts. Studies show, however, that many students fail to grasp ideas about atom rearrangement and conservation during chemical reactions or the application of these ideas to biological systems. To help provide students with a better foundation, we used research-based design principles and collaborated in the development of a curricular intervention that applies chemistry ideas to living and nonliving contexts. Six eighth grade teachers and their students participated in a test of the unit during the Spring of 2013. Two of the teachers had used an earlier version of the unit the previous spring. The other four teachers were randomly assigned either to implement the unit or to continue teaching the same content using existing materials. Pre- and posttests were administered, and the data were analyzed using Rasch modeling and hierarchical linear modeling. The results showed that, when controlling for pretest score, gender, language, and ethnicity, students who used the curricular intervention performed better on the posttest than the students using existing materials. Additionally, students who participated in the intervention held fewer misconceptions. These results demonstrate the unit’s promise in improving students’ understanding of the targeted ideas. PMID:27909024

  2. Systems biology in animal sciences

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Woelders, H.; Pas, te M.F.W.; Bannink, A.; Veerkamp, R.F.; Smits, M.A.

    2011-01-01

    Systems biology is a rapidly expanding field of research and is applied in a number of biological disciplines. In animal sciences, omics approaches are increasingly used, yielding vast amounts of data, but systems biology approaches to extract understanding from these data of biological processes

  3. Towards a system level understanding of non-model organisms sampled from the environment: a network biology approach.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Tim D Williams

    2011-08-01

    Full Text Available The acquisition and analysis of datasets including multi-level omics and physiology from non-model species, sampled from field populations, is a formidable challenge, which so far has prevented the application of systems biology approaches. If successful, these could contribute enormously to improving our understanding of how populations of living organisms adapt to environmental stressors relating to, for example, pollution and climate. Here we describe the first application of a network inference approach integrating transcriptional, metabolic and phenotypic information representative of wild populations of the European flounder fish, sampled at seven estuarine locations in northern Europe with different degrees and profiles of chemical contaminants. We identified network modules, whose activity was predictive of environmental exposure and represented a link between molecular and morphometric indices. These sub-networks represented both known and candidate novel adverse outcome pathways representative of several aspects of human liver pathophysiology such as liver hyperplasia, fibrosis, and hepatocellular carcinoma. At the molecular level these pathways were linked to TNF alpha, TGF beta, PDGF, AGT and VEGF signalling. More generally, this pioneering study has important implications as it can be applied to model molecular mechanisms of compensatory adaptation to a wide range of scenarios in wild populations.

  4. Nutritional Systems Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Kasper

    and network biology has the potential to increase our understanding of how small molecules affect metabolic pathways and homeostasis, how this perturbation changes at the disease state, and to what extent individual genotypes contribute to this. A fruitful strategy in approaching and exploring the field...... biology research. The paper also shows as a proof-of-concept that a systems biology approach to diet is meaningful and demonstrates some basic principles on how to work with diet systematic. The second chapter of this thesis we developed the resource NutriChem v1.0. A foodchemical database linking...... sites of diet on the disease pathway. We propose a framework for interrogating the critical targets in colon cancer process and identifying plant-based dietary interventions as important modifiers using a systems chemical biology approach. The fifth chapter of the thesis is on discovering of novel anti...

  5. The Physics behind Systems Biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Radde Nicole E.

    2016-12-01

    Full Text Available Systems Biology is a young and rapidly evolving research field, which combines experimental techniques and mathematical modeling in order to achieve a mechanistic understanding of processes underlying the regulation and evolution of living systems. Systems Biology is often associated with an Engineering approach: The purpose is to formulate a data-rich, detailed simulation model that allows to perform numerical (‘in silico’ experiments and then draw conclusions about the biological system. While methods from Engineering may be an appropriate approach to extending the scope of biological investigations to experimentally inaccessible realms and to supporting data-rich experimental work, it may not be the best strategy in a search for design principles of biological systems and the fundamental laws underlying Biology. Physics has a long tradition of characterizing and understanding emergent collective behaviors in systems of interacting units and searching for universal laws. Therefore, it is natural that many concepts used in Systems Biology have their roots in Physics. With an emphasis on Theoretical Physics, we will here review the ‘Physics core’ of Systems Biology, show how some success stories in Systems Biology can be traced back to concepts developed in Physics, and discuss how Systems Biology can further benefit from its Theoretical Physics foundation.

  6. The paths of mortality: how understanding the biology of aging can help explain systems behavior of single cells.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Crane, Matthew M; Kaeberlein, Matt

    2018-04-01

    Aging is a fundamental aspect of life, yet also one of the most confounding. In individual cells, aging results in a progressive decline which affects all organelles and reduces a cell's ability to maintain homeostasis. Because of the interconnected nature of cellular systems, the failure of even a single organelle can have cascading effects. We are just beginning to understand the dramatic physiological changes that occur during aging. Because most aging research has focused on population dynamics, or differences between wild-type and mutant populations, single-cell behavior has been largely overlooked. An open question is whether aging cells are defined by predictable sequences of physiological changes, or whether they proceed along divergent aging trajectories defined by whichever system begins to fail first. Can aging be best characterized by a cell-cycle like model with stereotyped states all cells progress through, or a Waddington landscape with divergent trajectories? Here we present work on understanding the changing physiological states of aging cells, why it will impact systems and synthetic biologists, and how the systems community can contribute significantly to the study of aging.

  7. Static Analysis for Systems Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielson, Flemming; Nielson, Hanne Riis; Rosa, D. Schuch da

    2004-01-01

    This paper shows how static analysis techniques can help understanding biological systems. Based on a simple example we illustrate the outcome of performing three different analyses extracting information of increasing precision. We conclude by reporting on the potential impact and exploitation o...... of these techniques in systems biology....

  8. Systems biology approach to bioremediation

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Chakraborty, Romy; Wu, Cindy H.; Hazen, Terry C.

    2012-06-01

    Bioremediation has historically been approached as a ‘black box’ in terms of our fundamental understanding. Thus it succeeds and fails, seldom without a complete understanding of why. Systems biology is an integrated research approach to study complex biological systems, by investigating interactions and networks at the molecular, cellular, community, and ecosystem level. The knowledge of these interactions within individual components is fundamental to understanding the dynamics of the ecosystem under investigation. Finally, understanding and modeling functional microbial community structure and stress responses in environments at all levels have tremendous implications for our fundamental understanding of hydrobiogeochemical processes and the potential for making bioremediation breakthroughs and illuminating the ‘black box’.

  9. Recent introduction of an allodapine bee into Fiji: A new model system for understanding biological invasions by pollinators.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groom, Scott V C; Tuiwawa, Marika V; Stevens, Mark I; Schwarz, Michael P

    2015-08-01

    Morphology-based studies have suggested a very depauperate bee fauna for islands in the South West Pacific, and recent genetic studies since have indicated an even smaller endemic fauna with many bee species in this region resulting from human-aided dispersal. These introduced species have the potential to both disrupt native pollinator suites as well as augment crop pollination, but for most species the timings of introduction are unknown. We examined the distribution and nesting biology of the long-tongued bee Braunsapis puangensis that was first recorded from Fiji in 2007. This bee has now become widespread in Fiji and both its local abundance and geographical range are likely to increase dramatically. The impacts of this invasion are potentially enormous for agriculture and native ecosystems, but they also provide opportunities for understanding how social insect species adapt to new environments. We outline the major issues associated with this recent invasion and argue that a long-term monitoring study is needed. © 2014 Institute of Zoology, Chinese Academy of Sciences.

  10. Biological conversion system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scott, C.D.

    A system for bioconversion of organic material comprises a primary bioreactor column wherein a biological active agent (zymomonas mobilis) converts the organic material (sugar) to a product (alcohol), a rejuvenator column wherein the biological activity of said biological active agent is enhanced, and means for circulating said biological active agent between said primary bioreactor column and said rejuvenator column.

  11. Integrative radiation systems biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Unger, Kristian

    2014-01-01

    Maximisation of the ratio of normal tissue preservation and tumour cell reduction is the main concept of radiotherapy alone or combined with chemo-, immuno- or biologically targeted therapy. The foremost parameter influencing this ratio is radiation sensitivity and its modulation towards a more efficient killing of tumour cells and a better preservation of normal tissue at the same time is the overall aim of modern therapy schemas. Nevertheless, this requires a deep understanding of the molecular mechanisms of radiation sensitivity in order to identify its key players as potential therapeutic targets. Moreover, the success of conventional approaches that tried to statistically associate altered radiation sensitivity with any molecular phenotype such as gene expression proofed to be somewhat limited since the number of clinically used targets is rather sparse. However, currently a paradigm shift is taking place from pure frequentistic association analysis to the rather holistic systems biology approach that seeks to mathematically model the system to be investigated and to allow the prediction of an altered phenotype as the function of one single or a signature of biomarkers. Integrative systems biology also considers the data from different molecular levels such as the genome, transcriptome or proteome in order to partially or fully comprehend the causal chain of molecular mechanisms. An example for the application of this concept currently carried out at the Clinical Cooperation Group “Personalized Radiotherapy in Head and Neck Cancer” of the Helmholtz-Zentrum München and the LMU Munich is described. This review article strives for providing a compact overview on the state of the art of systems biology, its actual challenges, potential applications, chances and limitations in radiation oncology research working towards improved personalised therapy concepts using this relatively new methodology

  12. Systems Biology as an Integrated Platform for Bioinformatics, Systems Synthetic Biology, and Systems Metabolic Engineering

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Bor-Sen; Wu, Chia-Chou

    2013-01-01

    Systems biology aims at achieving a system-level understanding of living organisms and applying this knowledge to various fields such as synthetic biology, metabolic engineering, and medicine. System-level understanding of living organisms can be derived from insight into: (i) system structure and the mechanism of biological networks such as gene regulation, protein interactions, signaling, and metabolic pathways; (ii) system dynamics of biological networks, which provides an understanding of stability, robustness, and transduction ability through system identification, and through system analysis methods; (iii) system control methods at different levels of biological networks, which provide an understanding of systematic mechanisms to robustly control system states, minimize malfunctions, and provide potential therapeutic targets in disease treatment; (iv) systematic design methods for the modification and construction of biological networks with desired behaviors, which provide system design principles and system simulations for synthetic biology designs and systems metabolic engineering. This review describes current developments in systems biology, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering for engineering and biology researchers. We also discuss challenges and future prospects for systems biology and the concept of systems biology as an integrated platform for bioinformatics, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering. PMID:24709875

  13. Systems Biology as an Integrated Platform for Bioinformatics, Systems Synthetic Biology, and Systems Metabolic Engineering

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bor-Sen Chen

    2013-10-01

    Full Text Available Systems biology aims at achieving a system-level understanding of living organisms and applying this knowledge to various fields such as synthetic biology, metabolic engineering, and medicine. System-level understanding of living organisms can be derived from insight into: (i system structure and the mechanism of biological networks such as gene regulation, protein interactions, signaling, and metabolic pathways; (ii system dynamics of biological networks, which provides an understanding of stability, robustness, and transduction ability through system identification, and through system analysis methods; (iii system control methods at different levels of biological networks, which provide an understanding of systematic mechanisms to robustly control system states, minimize malfunctions, and provide potential therapeutic targets in disease treatment; (iv systematic design methods for the modification and construction of biological networks with desired behaviors, which provide system design principles and system simulations for synthetic biology designs and systems metabolic engineering. This review describes current developments in systems biology, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering for engineering and biology researchers. We also discuss challenges and future prospects for systems biology and the concept of systems biology as an integrated platform for bioinformatics, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering.

  14. Systems biology as an integrated platform for bioinformatics, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Bor-Sen; Wu, Chia-Chou

    2013-10-11

    Systems biology aims at achieving a system-level understanding of living organisms and applying this knowledge to various fields such as synthetic biology, metabolic engineering, and medicine. System-level understanding of living organisms can be derived from insight into: (i) system structure and the mechanism of biological networks such as gene regulation, protein interactions, signaling, and metabolic pathways; (ii) system dynamics of biological networks, which provides an understanding of stability, robustness, and transduction ability through system identification, and through system analysis methods; (iii) system control methods at different levels of biological networks, which provide an understanding of systematic mechanisms to robustly control system states, minimize malfunctions, and provide potential therapeutic targets in disease treatment; (iv) systematic design methods for the modification and construction of biological networks with desired behaviors, which provide system design principles and system simulations for synthetic biology designs and systems metabolic engineering. This review describes current developments in systems biology, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering for engineering and biology researchers. We also discuss challenges and future prospects for systems biology and the concept of systems biology as an integrated platform for bioinformatics, systems synthetic biology, and systems metabolic engineering.

  15. Compositional Modeling of Biological Systems

    OpenAIRE

    Zámborszky, Judit

    2010-01-01

    Molecular interactions are wired in a fascinating way resulting in complex behavior of bio-logical systems. Theoretical modeling provides us a useful framework for understanding the dynamics and the function of such networks. The complexity of the biological systems calls for conceptual tools that manage the combinatorial explosion of the set of possible interac-tions. A suitable conceptual tool to attack complexity is compositionality, already success-fully used in the process algebra field ...

  16. The "What Is a System" Reflection Interview as a Knowledge Integration Activity for High School Students' Understanding of Complex Systems in Human Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tripto, Jaklin; Ben-Zvi Assaraf, Orit; Snapir, Zohar; Amit, Miriam

    2016-01-01

    This study examined the reflection interview as a tool for assessing and facilitating the use of "systems language" amongst 11th grade students who have recently completed their first year of high school biology. Eighty-three students composed two concept maps in the 10th grade--one at the beginning of the school year and one at its end.…

  17. Quantum Effects in Biological Systems

    CERN Document Server

    2016-01-01

    Since the last decade the study of quantum mechanical phenomena in biological systems has become a vibrant field of research. Initially sparked by evidence of quantum effects in energy transport that is instrumental for photosynthesis, quantum biology asks the question of how methods and models from quantum theory can help us to understand fundamental mechanisms in living organisms. This approach entails a paradigm change challenging the related disciplines: The successful framework of quantum theory is taken out of its low-temperature, microscopic regimes and applied to hot and dense macroscopic environments, thereby extending the toolbox of biology and biochemistry at the same time. The Quantum Effects in Biological Systems conference is a platform for researchers from biology, chemistry and physics to present and discuss the latest developments in the field of quantum biology. After meetings in Lisbon (2009), Harvard (2010), Ulm (2011), Berkeley (2012), Vienna (2013), Singapore (2014) and Florence (2015),...

  18. Systems Biology of Metabolism.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nielsen, Jens

    2017-06-20

    Metabolism is highly complex and involves thousands of different connected reactions; it is therefore necessary to use mathematical models for holistic studies. The use of mathematical models in biology is referred to as systems biology. In this review, the principles of systems biology are described, and two different types of mathematical models used for studying metabolism are discussed: kinetic models and genome-scale metabolic models. The use of different omics technologies, including transcriptomics, proteomics, metabolomics, and fluxomics, for studying metabolism is presented. Finally, the application of systems biology for analyzing global regulatory structures, engineering the metabolism of cell factories, and analyzing human diseases is discussed.

  19. Understanding land administration systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    P. Williamson, Ian; Enemark, Stig; Wallace, Judy

    2008-01-01

    This paper introduces basic land administration theory and highlights four key concepts that are fundamental to understanding modern land administration systems. Readers may recall the first part of the paper in October issue of Coordinates. Here is the concluding part that focuses on the changing...

  20. Understanding Global Change (UGC) as a Unifying Conceptual Framework for Teaching Ecology: Using UGC in a High School Biology Program to Integrate Earth Science and Biology, and to Demonstrate the Value of Modeling Global Systems in Promoting Conceptual Learning

    Science.gov (United States)

    Levine, J.; Bean, J. R.

    2017-12-01

    Global change science is ideal for NGSS-informed teaching, but presents a serious challenge to K-12 educators because it is complex and interdisciplinary- combining earth science, biology, chemistry, and physics. Global systems are themselves complex. Adding anthropogenic influences on those systems creates a formidable list of topics - greenhouse effect, climate change, nitrogen enrichment, introduced species, land-use change among them - which are often presented as a disconnected "laundry list" of "facts." This complexity, combined with public and mass-media scientific illiteracy, leaves global change science vulnerable to misrepresentation and politicization, creating additional challenges to teachers in public schools. Ample stand-alone, one-off, online resources, many of them excellent, are (to date) underutilized by teachers in the high school science course taken by most students: biology. The Understanding Global Change project (UGC) from the UC Berkeley Museum of Paleontology has created a conceptual framework that organizes, connects, and explains global systems, human and non-human drivers of change in those systems, and measurable changes in those systems. This organization and framework employ core ideas, crosscutting concepts, structure/function relationships, and system models in a unique format that facilitates authentic understanding, rather than memorization. This system serves as an organizing framework for the entire ecology unit of a forthcoming mainstream high school biology program. The UGC system model is introduced up front with its core informational graphic. The model is elaborated, step by step, by adding concepts and processes as they are introduced and explained in each chapter. The informational graphic is thus used in several ways: to organize material as it is presented, to summarize topics in each chapter and put them in perspective, and for review and critical thinking exercises that supplement the usual end-of-chapter lists of

  1. Ten questions about systems biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Joyner, Michael J; Pedersen, Bente K

    2011-01-01

    In this paper we raise 'ten questions' broadly related to 'omics', the term systems biology, and why the new biology has failed to deliver major therapeutic advances for many common diseases, especially diabetes and cardiovascular disease. We argue that a fundamentally narrow and reductionist...... to understand how whole animals adapt to the real world. We argue that a lack of fluency in these concepts is a major stumbling block for what has been narrowly defined as 'systems biology' by some of its leading advocates. We also point out that it is a failure of regulation at multiple levels that causes many...

  2. Exploring biological and social networks to better understand and treat diabetes mellitus. Comment on "Network science of biological systems at different scales: A review" by Gosak et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Belgardt, Bengt-Frederik; Jarasch, Alexander; Lammert, Eckhard

    2018-03-01

    Improvements and breakthroughs in computational sciences in the last 20 years have paralleled the rapid gain of influence of social networks on our daily life. As timely reviewed by Perc and colleagues [1], understanding and treating complex human diseases, such as type 2 diabetes (T2D), from which already more than 5% of the global population suffer, will necessitate analyzing and understanding the multi-layered and interconnected networks that usually keep physiological functions intact, but are disturbed in disease states. These networks range from intra- and intercellular networks influencing cell behavior (e.g., secretion of insulin in response to food intake and anabolic response to insulin) to social networks influencing human behavior (e.g., food intake and physical activity). This commentary first expands on the background of pancreatic beta cell networks in human health and T2D, briefly introduces exosomes as novel signals exchanged between distant cellular networks, and finally discusses potential pitfalls and chances in network analyses with regards to experimental data acquisition and processing.

  3. Systems biology of human atherosclerosis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shalhoub, Joseph; Sikkel, Markus B; Davies, Kerry J; Vorkas, Panagiotis A; Want, Elizabeth J; Davies, Alun H

    2014-01-01

    Systems biology describes a holistic and integrative approach to understand physiology and pathology. The "omic" disciplines include genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, and metabolic profiling (metabonomics and metabolomics). By adopting a stance, which is opposing (yet complimentary) to conventional research techniques, systems biology offers an overview by assessing the "net" biological effect imposed by a disease or nondisease state. There are a number of different organizational levels to be understood, from DNA to protein, metabolites, cells, organs and organisms, even beyond this to an organism's context. Systems biology relies on the existence of "nodes" and "edges." Nodes are the constituent part of the system being studied (eg, proteins in the proteome), while the edges are the way these constituents interact. In future, it will be increasingly important to collaborate, collating data from multiple studies to improve data sets, making them freely available and undertaking integrative analyses.

  4. Mammalian Synthetic Biology: Engineering Biological Systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Black, Joshua B; Perez-Pinera, Pablo; Gersbach, Charles A

    2017-06-21

    The programming of new functions into mammalian cells has tremendous application in research and medicine. Continued improvements in the capacity to sequence and synthesize DNA have rapidly increased our understanding of mechanisms of gene function and regulation on a genome-wide scale and have expanded the set of genetic components available for programming cell biology. The invention of new research tools, including targetable DNA-binding systems such as CRISPR/Cas9 and sensor-actuator devices that can recognize and respond to diverse chemical, mechanical, and optical inputs, has enabled precise control of complex cellular behaviors at unprecedented spatial and temporal resolution. These tools have been critical for the expansion of synthetic biology techniques from prokaryotic and lower eukaryotic hosts to mammalian systems. Recent progress in the development of genome and epigenome editing tools and in the engineering of designer cells with programmable genetic circuits is expanding approaches to prevent, diagnose, and treat disease and to establish personalized theranostic strategies for next-generation medicines. This review summarizes the development of these enabling technologies and their application to transforming mammalian synthetic biology into a distinct field in research and medicine.

  5. Teaching systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alves, R; Vilaprinyo, E; Sorribas, A

    2011-03-01

    Advances in systems biology are increasingly dependent upon the integration of various types of data and different methodologies to reconstruct how cells work at the systemic level. Thus, teams with a varied array of expertise and people with interdisciplinary training are needed. So far this training was thought to be more productive if aimed at the Masters or PhD level. At this level, multiple specialised and in-depth courses on the different subject matters of systems biology are taught to already well-prepared students. This approach is mostly based on the recognition that systems biology requires a wide background that is hard to find in undergraduate students. Nevertheless, and given the importance of the field, the authors argue that exposition of undergraduate students to the methods and paradigms of systems biology would be advantageous. Here they present and discuss a successful experiment in teaching systems biology to third year undergraduate biotechnology students at the University of Lleida in Spain. The authors' experience, together with that from others, argues for the adequateness of teaching systems biology at the undergraduate level. [Includes supplementary material].

  6. Systems Biology and Health Systems Complexity in;

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Donald Combs, C.; Barham, S.R.; Sloot, P.M.A.

    2016-01-01

    Systems biology addresses interactions in biological systems at different scales of biological organization, from the molecular to the cellular, organ, organism, societal, and ecosystem levels. This chapter expands on the concept of systems biology, explores its implications for individual patients

  7. Editorial overview : Systems biology for biotechnology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heinemann, Matthias; Pilpel, Yitzhak

    About 15 years ago, systems biology was introduced as a novel approach to biological research. On the one side, its introduction was a result of the recognition that through solely the reductionist approach, we would ulti- mately not be able to understand how biological systems function as a whole.

  8. The `What is a system' reflection interview as a knowledge integration activity for high school students' understanding of complex systems in human biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tripto, Jaklin; Ben-Zvi Assaraf, Orit; Snapir, Zohar; Amit, Miriam

    2016-03-01

    This study examined the reflection interview as a tool for assessing and facilitating the use of 'systems language' amongst 11th grade students who have recently completed their first year of high school biology. Eighty-three students composed two concept maps in the 10th grade-one at the beginning of the school year and one at its end. The first part of the interview is dedicated to guiding the students through comparing their two concept maps and by means of both explicit and non-explicit teaching. Our study showed that the explicit guidance in comparing the two concept maps was more effective than the non-explicit, eliciting a variety of different, more specific, types of interactions and patterns (e.g. 'hierarchy', 'dynamism', 'homeostasis') in the students' descriptions of the human body system. The reflection interview as a knowledge integration activity was found to be an effective tool for assessing the subjects' conceptual models of 'system complexity', and for identifying those aspects of a system that are most commonly misunderstood.

  9. Understanding land administration systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    P. Williamson, Ian; Enemark, Stig; Wallace, Judy

    2008-01-01

    This paper introduces basic land administration theory and highlights four key concepts that are fundamental to understanding modern land administration systems - firstly the land management paradigm and its influence on the land administration framework, secondly the role that the cadastre plays...... in contributing to sustainable development, thirdly the changing nature of ownership and the role of land markets, and lastly a land management vision that promotes land administration in support of sustainable development and spatial enablement of society. We present here the first part of the paper. The second...... part focuses on the changing  role of ownership and the role of land markets, and a land management vision will be published in November issue of Coordinates. Udgivelsesdato: Oktober...

  10. PREFACE: Scales of understanding in biological development Scales of understanding in biological development

    Science.gov (United States)

    Newman, Timothy

    2011-08-01

    The development of an adult organism from a fertilized egg remains one of the deep mysteries of biology. Great strides have been made in the past three decades, primarily through ever more sophisticated genetic analyses and the advent of live-cell imaging, yet the underlying principles governing development are elusive. Recently, a new generation of biological physicists has entered the field, attracted by the hallmarks of development— coordinated dynamics and pattern formation arising from cell-cell interactions—which reflect tantalizing analogs with many-body systems in condensed matter physics and related fields. There have been corresponding influxes of researchers from other quantitative disciplines. With new workers come new questions and foci at different scales in space, time and complexity. The reductionist philosophy of developmental genetics has become increasingly complemented by a search for effective mechanisms at higher scales, a strategy which has a proven track record of success in the study of complex systems in physics. Are there new and universal mechanisms of development, supra-genetic in nature, waiting to be discovered by focusing on higher scales, or is development fundamentally the intricately scripted unfolding of complex genetic instructions? In this special focus issue of Physical Biology, we present cutting-edge research into embryo development from a broad spectrum of groups representing cell and developmental biology, biological physics, bioengineering and biomathematics. We are provided with a sense of how this multidisciplinary community views the fundamental issue of scale in development and are given some excellent examples of how we can bridge these scales through interdisciplinary collaboration, in order to create new levels of understanding. We start with two reviews which will provide newcomers with a guide to some of the outstanding questions in the field. Winklbauer and Müller use the phenomenon of mesoderm spreading as

  11. Inverse problems in systems biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Engl, Heinz W; Lu, James; Müller, Stefan; Flamm, Christoph; Schuster, Peter; Kügler, Philipp

    2009-01-01

    Systems biology is a new discipline built upon the premise that an understanding of how cells and organisms carry out their functions cannot be gained by looking at cellular components in isolation. Instead, consideration of the interplay between the parts of systems is indispensable for analyzing, modeling, and predicting systems' behavior. Studying biological processes under this premise, systems biology combines experimental techniques and computational methods in order to construct predictive models. Both in building and utilizing models of biological systems, inverse problems arise at several occasions, for example, (i) when experimental time series and steady state data are used to construct biochemical reaction networks, (ii) when model parameters are identified that capture underlying mechanisms or (iii) when desired qualitative behavior such as bistability or limit cycle oscillations is engineered by proper choices of parameter combinations. In this paper we review principles of the modeling process in systems biology and illustrate the ill-posedness and regularization of parameter identification problems in that context. Furthermore, we discuss the methodology of qualitative inverse problems and demonstrate how sparsity enforcing regularization allows the determination of key reaction mechanisms underlying the qualitative behavior. (topical review)

  12. Shape understanding system machine understanding and human understanding

    CERN Document Server

    Les, Zbigniew

    2015-01-01

    This is the third book presenting selected results of research on the further development of the shape understanding system (SUS) carried out by authors in the newly founded Queen Jadwiga Research Institute of Understanding. In this book the new term Machine Understanding is introduced referring to a new area of research aiming to investigate the possibility of building machines with the ability to understand. It is presented that SUS needs to some extent mimic human understanding and for this reason machines are evaluated according to the rules applied for the evaluation of human understanding. The book shows how to formulate problems and how it can be tested if the machine is able to solve these problems.    

  13. Plant Systems Biology (editorial)

    Science.gov (United States)

    In June 2003, Plant Physiology published an Arabidopsis special issue devoted to plant systems biology. The intention of Natasha Raikhel and Gloria Coruzzi, the two editors of this first-of-its-kind issue, was ‘‘to help nucleate this new effort within the plant community’’ as they considered that ‘‘...

  14. Systems biology at work

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Martins Dos Santos, V.A.P.; Damborsky, J.

    2010-01-01

    In his editorial overview for the 2008 Special Issue on this topic, the late Jaroslav Stark pointedly noted that systems biology is no longer a niche pursuit, but a recognized discipline in its own right “noisily” coming of age [1]. Whilst general underlying principles and basic techniques are now

  15. 7th Annual Systems Biology Symposium: Systems Biology and Engineering

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Galitski, Timothy P.

    2008-04-01

    Systems biology recognizes the complex multi-scale organization of biological systems, from molecules to ecosystems. The International Symposium on Systems Biology has been hosted by the Institute for Systems Biology in Seattle, Washington, since 2002. The annual two-day event gathers the most influential researchers transforming biology into an integrative discipline investingating complex systems. Engineering and application of new technology is a central element of systems biology. Genome-scale, or very small-scale, biological questions drive the enigneering of new technologies, which enable new modes of experimentation and computational analysis, leading to new biological insights and questions. Concepts and analytical methods in engineering are now finding direct applications in biology. Therefore, the 2008 Symposium, funded in partnership with the Department of Energy, featured global leaders in "Systems Biology and Engineering."

  16. Defining Kidney Biology to Understand Renal Disease

    Science.gov (United States)

    Little, Melissa H.; Brown, Dennis; Humphreys, Benjamin D.; McMahon, Andrew P.; Miner, Jeffrey H.; Sands, Jeff M.; Weisz, Ora A.; Mullins, Chris

    2014-01-01

    The Kidney Research National Dialogue represents a novel effort by the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases to solicit and prioritize research objectives from the renal research and clinical communities. The present commentary highlights selected scientific opportunities specific to the study of renal development, physiology, and cell biology. Describing such fundamental kidney biology serves as a necessary foundation for translational and clinical studies that will advance disease care and prevention. It is intended that these objectives foster and focus scientific efforts in these areas in the coming decade and beyond. PMID:24370769

  17. Fostering synergy between cell biology and systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Eddy, James A; Funk, Cory C; Price, Nathan D

    2015-08-01

    In the shared pursuit of elucidating detailed mechanisms of cell function, systems biology presents a natural complement to ongoing efforts in cell biology. Systems biology aims to characterize biological systems through integrated and quantitative modeling of cellular information. The process of model building and analysis provides value through synthesizing and cataloging information about cells and molecules, predicting mechanisms and identifying generalizable themes, generating hypotheses and guiding experimental design, and highlighting knowledge gaps and refining understanding. In turn, incorporating domain expertise and experimental data is crucial for building towards whole cell models. An iterative cycle of interaction between cell and systems biologists advances the goals of both fields and establishes a framework for mechanistic understanding of the genome-to-phenome relationship. Crown Copyright © 2015. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. Using biological networks to improve our understanding of infectious diseases

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nicola J. Mulder

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Infectious diseases are the leading cause of death, particularly in developing countries. Although many drugs are available for treating the most common infectious diseases, in many cases the mechanism of action of these drugs or even their targets in the pathogen remain unknown. In addition, the key factors or processes in pathogens that facilitate infection and disease progression are often not well understood. Since proteins do not work in isolation, understanding biological systems requires a better understanding of the interconnectivity between proteins in different pathways and processes, which includes both physical and other functional interactions. Such biological networks can be generated within organisms or between organisms sharing a common environment using experimental data and computational predictions. Though different data sources provide different levels of accuracy, confidence in interactions can be measured using interaction scores. Connections between interacting proteins in biological networks can be represented as graphs and edges, and thus studied using existing algorithms and tools from graph theory. There are many different applications of biological networks, and here we discuss three such applications, specifically applied to the infectious disease tuberculosis, with its causative agent Mycobacterium tuberculosis and host, Homo sapiens. The applications include the use of the networks for function prediction, comparison of networks for evolutionary studies, and the generation and use of host–pathogen interaction networks.

  19. Understanding radar systems

    CERN Document Server

    Kingsley, Simon

    1999-01-01

    What is radar? What systems are currently in use? How do they work? This book provides engineers and scientists with answers to these critical questions, focusing on actual radar systems in use today. It is a perfect resource for those just entering the field, or as a quick refresher for experienced practitioners. The book leads readers through the specialized language and calculations that comprise the complex world of radar engineering as seen in dozens of state-of-the-art radar systems. An easy to read, wide ranging guide to the world of modern radar systems.

  20. Carbon nanomaterials in biological systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Pu Chun Ke [Laboratory of Single-Molecule Biophysics and Polymer Physics, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Clemson University, Clemson, SC 29634 (United States); Qiao Rui [Department of Mechanical Engineering, Clemson University, Clemson, SC 29634 (United States)

    2007-09-19

    This paper intends to reflect, from the biophysical viewpoint, our current understanding on interfacing nanomaterials, such as carbon nanotubes and fullerenes, with biological systems. Strategies for improving the solubility, and therefore, the bioavailability of nanomaterials in aqueous solutions are summarized. In particular, the underlining mechanisms of attaching biomacromolecules (DNA, RNA, proteins) and lysophospholipids onto carbon nanotubes and gallic acids onto fullerenes are analyzed. The diffusion and the cellular delivery of RNA-coated carbon nanotubes are characterized using fluorescence microscopy. The translocation of fullerenes across cell membranes is simulated using molecular dynamics to offer new insight into the complex issue of nanotoxicity. To assess the fate of nanomaterials in the environment, the biomodification of lipid-coated carbon nanotubes by the aquatic organism Daphnia magna is discussed. The aim of this paper is to illuminate the need for adopting multidisciplinary approaches in the field study of nanomaterials in biological systems and in the environment. (topical review)

  1. Carbon nanomaterials in biological systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Pu Chun Ke; Qiao Rui

    2007-01-01

    This paper intends to reflect, from the biophysical viewpoint, our current understanding on interfacing nanomaterials, such as carbon nanotubes and fullerenes, with biological systems. Strategies for improving the solubility, and therefore, the bioavailability of nanomaterials in aqueous solutions are summarized. In particular, the underlining mechanisms of attaching biomacromolecules (DNA, RNA, proteins) and lysophospholipids onto carbon nanotubes and gallic acids onto fullerenes are analyzed. The diffusion and the cellular delivery of RNA-coated carbon nanotubes are characterized using fluorescence microscopy. The translocation of fullerenes across cell membranes is simulated using molecular dynamics to offer new insight into the complex issue of nanotoxicity. To assess the fate of nanomaterials in the environment, the biomodification of lipid-coated carbon nanotubes by the aquatic organism Daphnia magna is discussed. The aim of this paper is to illuminate the need for adopting multidisciplinary approaches in the field study of nanomaterials in biological systems and in the environment. (topical review)

  2. Biological and social understanding of human nature: biopolitical dimension

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    S. K. Kostiuchkov

    2014-07-01

    Full Text Available This paper examines the position of the biopolitical nature of man as a biosocial being given supplies of both the two spheres of life – natural, biological and social. The necessity of understanding of human nature, which by definition are bio-social importance of the approach to the definition of man as an integral, binary-konnotovanoyi of the «social individual – a species» which is characterized by symmetrical opposition – upposition social and biological. It was found that the main task of modern political science, and in particular bio-political studies presented appeals to rethink the political picture of the world in order to predict the development of a new order or a new chaos. Understanding the formation of a new global civilization worldview is today one of the most important problems, which is connected with the main problem of the modern world – the task of preserving life on the planet. It is concluded that the contradictions of human nature – between the biological and the social, physical and spiritual, universal and the particular, natural and artificial, rational and emotional – in today’s conditions are extremely sharp. The said situation requires more in-depth scientific analysis of human nature, the study of the structural level as human biosocial system.

  3. Logical analysis of biological systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mardare, Radu Iulian

    2005-01-01

    R. Mardare, Logical analysis of biological systems. Fundamenta Informaticae, N 64:271-285, 2005.......R. Mardare, Logical analysis of biological systems. Fundamenta Informaticae, N 64:271-285, 2005....

  4. Understanding the Thermodynamics of Biological Order

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peterson, Jacob

    2012-01-01

    By growth in size and complexity (i.e., changing from more probable to less probable states), plants and animals appear to defy the second law of thermodynamics. The usual explanation describes the input of nutrient and sunlight energy into open thermodynamic systems. However, energy input alone does not address the ability to organize and create…

  5. Mathematical Modeling of Complex Biological Systems

    OpenAIRE

    Fischer, Hans Peter

    2008-01-01

    To understand complex biological systems such as cells, tissues, or even the human body, it is not sufficient to identify and characterize the individual molecules in the system. It also is necessary to obtain a thorough understanding of the interaction between molecules and pathways. This is even truer for understanding complex diseases such as cancer, Alzheimer’s disease, or alcoholism. With recent technological advances enabling researchers to monitor complex cellular processes on the mole...

  6. Biological Systems Thinking for Control Engineering Design

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    D. J. Murray-Smith

    2004-01-01

    Full Text Available Artificial neural networks and genetic algorithms are often quoted in discussions about the contribution of biological systems thinking to engineering design. This paper reviews work on the neuromuscular system, a field in which biological systems thinking could make specific contributions to the development and design of automatic control systems for mechatronics and robotics applications. The paper suggests some specific areas in which a better understanding of this biological control system could be expected to contribute to control engineering design methods in the future. Particular emphasis is given to the nonlinear nature of elements within the neuromuscular system and to processes of neural signal processing, sensing and system adaptivity. Aspects of the biological system that are of particular significance for engineering control systems include sensor fusion, sensor redundancy and parallelism, together with advanced forms of signal processing for adaptive and learning control. 

  7. Dominance as adaptive stressing and ranking of males, serving to allocate reproduction by differential self-suppressed fertility: towards a fully biological understanding of social systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moxon, Steve

    2009-07-01

    mutually exclusive of the consensus model, that dominance/DH is: same-sex only; present whenever, within one or both sexes, there is potential conflict over reproduction, and there is no mechanism to preclude this, but otherwise is absent; always associated with some degree of differential physiological reproductive suppression. This new conceptualization of dominance has major implications for the social as well as biological sciences, in that resource-competition models of the basis of sociality will have to give way to a thoroughgoing biological understanding that places centre-stage not resources but reproduction; with consequent radical revision of notions of 'power'.

  8. Systems biology in critical-care nursing.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schallom, Lynn; Thimmesch, Amanda R; Pierce, Janet D

    2011-01-01

    Systems biology applies advances in technology and new fields of study including genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics, and metabolomics to the development of new treatments and approaches of care for the critically ill and injured patient. An understanding of systems biology enhances a nurse's ability to implement evidence-based practice and to educate patients and families on novel testing and therapies. Systems biology is an integrated and holistic view of humans in relationship with the environment. Biomarkers are used to measure the presence and severity of disease and are rapidly expanding in systems biology endeavors. A systems biology approach using predictive, preventive, and participatory involvement is being utilized in a plethora of conditions of critical illness and injury including sepsis, cancer, pulmonary disease, and traumatic injuries.

  9. Plant systems biology: insights, advances and challenges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sheth, Bhavisha P; Thaker, Vrinda S

    2014-07-01

    Plants dwelling at the base of biological food chain are of fundamental significance in providing solutions to some of the most daunting ecological and environmental problems faced by our planet. The reductionist views of molecular biology provide only a partial understanding to the phenotypic knowledge of plants. Systems biology offers a comprehensive view of plant systems, by employing a holistic approach integrating the molecular data at various hierarchical levels. In this review, we discuss the basics of systems biology including the various 'omics' approaches and their integration, the modeling aspects and the tools needed for the plant systems research. A particular emphasis is given to the recent analytical advances, updated published examples of plant systems biology studies and the future trends.

  10. Epistemological Predictors of Prospective Biology Teachers' Nature of Science Understandings

    Science.gov (United States)

    Köseoglu, Pinar; Köksal, Mustafa Serdar

    2015-01-01

    The purpose of this study was to investigate epistemological predictors of nature of science understandings of 281 prospective biology teachers surveyed using the Epistemological Beliefs Scale Regarding Science and the Nature of Science Scale. The findings on multiple linear regression showed that understandings about definition of science and…

  11. Next-Generation Sequencing: From Understanding Biology to Personalized Medicine

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Benjamin Meder

    2013-03-01

    Full Text Available Within just a few years, the new methods for high-throughput next-generation sequencing have generated completely novel insights into the heritability and pathophysiology of human disease. In this review, we wish to highlight the benefits of the current state-of-the-art sequencing technologies for genetic and epigenetic research. We illustrate how these technologies help to constantly improve our understanding of genetic mechanisms in biological systems and summarize the progress made so far. This can be exemplified by the case of heritable heart muscle diseases, so-called cardiomyopathies. Here, next-generation sequencing is able to identify novel disease genes, and first clinical applications demonstrate the successful translation of this technology into personalized patient care.

  12. Electromagnetic fields in biological systems

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Lin, James C

    2012-01-01

    "Focusing on exposure, induced fields, and absorbed energy, this volume covers the interaction of electromagnetic fields and waves with biological systems, spanning static fields to terahertz waves...

  13. Mapping biological systems to network systems

    CERN Document Server

    Rathore, Heena

    2016-01-01

    The book presents the challenges inherent in the paradigm shift of network systems from static to highly dynamic distributed systems – it proposes solutions that the symbiotic nature of biological systems can provide into altering networking systems to adapt to these changes. The author discuss how biological systems – which have the inherent capabilities of evolving, self-organizing, self-repairing and flourishing with time – are inspiring researchers to take opportunities from the biology domain and map them with the problems faced in network domain. The book revolves around the central idea of bio-inspired systems -- it begins by exploring why biology and computer network research are such a natural match. This is followed by presenting a broad overview of biologically inspired research in network systems -- it is classified by the biological field that inspired each topic and by the area of networking in which that topic lies. Each case elucidates how biological concepts have been most successfully ...

  14. Systems biology of fungal infection

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Fabian eHorn

    2012-04-01

    Full Text Available Elucidation of pathogenicity mechanisms of the most important human pathogenic fungi, Aspergillus fumigatus and Candida albicans, has gained great interest in the light of the steadily increasing number of cases of invasive fungal infections.A key feature of these infections is the interaction of the different fungal morphotypes with epithelial and immune effector cells in the human host. Because of the high level of complexity, it is necessary to describe and understand invasive fungal infection by taking a systems biological approach, i.e., by a comprehensive quantitative analysis of the non-linear and selective interactions of a large number of functionally diverse, and frequently multifunctional, sets of elements, e.g., genes, proteins, metabolites, which produce coherent and emergent behaviours in time and space. The recent advances in systems biology will now make it possible to uncover the structure and dynamics of molecular and cellular cause-effect relationships within these pathogenic interactions.We review current efforts to integrate omics and image-based data of host-pathogen interactions into network and spatio-temporal models. The modelling will help to elucidate pathogenicity mechanisms and to identify diagnostic biomarkers and potential drug targets for therapy and could thus pave the way for novel intervention strategies based on novel antifungal drugs and cell therapy.

  15. Telemetry System of Biological Parameters

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jan Spisak

    2005-01-01

    Full Text Available The mobile telemetry system of biological parameters serves for reading and wireless data transfer of measured values of selected biological parameters to an outlying computer. It concerns basically long time monitoring of vital function of car pilot.The goal of this projects is to propose mobile telemetry system for reading, wireless transfer and processing of biological parameters of car pilot during physical and psychical stress. It has to be made with respect to minimal consumption, weight and maximal device mobility. This system has to eliminate signal noise, which is created by biological artifacts and disturbances during the data transfer.

  16. Excited states in biological systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Cilento, G.; Zinner, K.; Bechara, E.J.H.; Duran, N.; Baptista, R.C. de; Shimizu, Y.; Augusto, O.; Faljoni-Alario, A.; Vidigal, C.C.C.; Oliveira, O.M.M.F.; Haun, M.

    1979-01-01

    Some aspects of bioluminescence related to bioenergetics are discussed: 1. chemical generation of excited species, by means of two general processes: electron transference and cyclic - and linear peroxide cleavage; 2. biological systems capable of generating excited states and 3. biological functions of these states, specially the non-emissive ones (tripletes). The production and the role of non-emissive excited states in biological systems are analysed, the main purpose of the study being the search for non-emissive states. Experiences carried out in biological systems are described; results and conclusions are given. (M.A.) [pt

  17. Systems Biology and Livestock Science

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pas, te M.F.W.; Woelders, H.; Bannink, A.

    2011-01-01

    Systems Biology is an interdisciplinary approach to the study of life made possible through the explosion of molecular data made available through the genome revolution and the simultaneous development of computational technologies that allow us to interpret these large data sets. Systems Biology

  18. A framework for evolutionary systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loewe, Laurence

    2009-02-24

    Many difficult problems in evolutionary genomics are related to mutations that have weak effects on fitness, as the consequences of mutations with large effects are often simple to predict. Current systems biology has accumulated much data on mutations with large effects and can predict the properties of knockout mutants in some systems. However experimental methods are too insensitive to observe small effects. Here I propose a novel framework that brings together evolutionary theory and current systems biology approaches in order to quantify small effects of mutations and their epistatic interactions in silico. Central to this approach is the definition of fitness correlates that can be computed in some current systems biology models employing the rigorous algorithms that are at the core of much work in computational systems biology. The framework exploits synergies between the realism of such models and the need to understand real systems in evolutionary theory. This framework can address many longstanding topics in evolutionary biology by defining various 'levels' of the adaptive landscape. Addressed topics include the distribution of mutational effects on fitness, as well as the nature of advantageous mutations, epistasis and robustness. Combining corresponding parameter estimates with population genetics models raises the possibility of testing evolutionary hypotheses at a new level of realism. EvoSysBio is expected to lead to a more detailed understanding of the fundamental principles of life by combining knowledge about well-known biological systems from several disciplines. This will benefit both evolutionary theory and current systems biology. Understanding robustness by analysing distributions of mutational effects and epistasis is pivotal for drug design, cancer research, responsible genetic engineering in synthetic biology and many other practical applications.

  19. The role of genetics in students' understandings of biological evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rowe, Mary Frances

    2001-10-01

    An important element of an education is an understanding of biology. Science education researchers have shown that both high school and college biology students finish their biology instruction with a poor understanding of evolution, an important unifying concept of the discipline. The goal of this study is to examine the role of genetics in students understanding of evolution. Eight introductory college biology students' understandings of evolutionary biology and their use of genetics concepts as they addressed problems in evolution were examined. Data collected included students' classwork and individual student interviews. Data analysis began with an examination of each students understanding of evolution concepts. The framework for this analysis was based on Mayr's (1982) description of Darwin's five theories: evolution as such, common descent, natural selection, gradualism, and multiplication of species. The descriptions of students' understandings of evolution are followed by an account of how students used genetics concepts to support their explanations of evolutionary processes. The data from this study illustrate how students used transmission genetics, molecular biology and population genetics to support their understandings of evolution. The students in this study constructed syntheses of genetics and evolution concepts that they employed to solve problems. These syntheses fell into three categories: productive, semi-productive and obstructive. Students who achieved a productive synthesis of genetics and evolution concepts also held appropriate understandings of common descent, natural selection, gradualism, and speciation. Students who constructed either a semi-productive or obstructive synthesis of genetics and evolution did not benefit in the same way. Productive synthesis students benefited from their syntheses of genetics and evolution concepts in three ways. They were able to construct complete problem solutions for evolutionary problems, to

  20. Understanding the biological and environmental implications of nanomaterials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Sijie

    quantified by UV-vis spectrophotometry and fitted with the Freundlich isothem. Effects of the adsorption of QDs on the photosynthetic activities of the algae are evaluated using O2 evolution and CO2 depletion assays, and the ecological impact of such adsorption is discussed. To understand the effects of nanomaterials on the cell membrane, nanoparticles (Au, TiO2, and QDs) of different surface charges and chemical compositions are introduced to HT-29 mammalian cells in Chapter 4. The polarization of the cell membrane is investigated using a FLIPR membrane potential kit. The phase of the cell membrane, in the presence of both positively and negatively charged nanoparticles, are examined using laurden, a lipophilic dye that serves as a molecular reporter on the fluidic or gel phase of the host membrane. To address the effects of nanomaterials on biological and ecological systems within the same context, Chapter 5 offers a first parallel comparison between mammalian and plant cell responses to nanomaterials. This study is conducted using a plant cell viability assay, complimented by bright field, fluorescence, and electron microscopy imaging. Discussions of this study are presented based on the hydrophobicity and solubility of C60(OH) 20 and of supramolecular complex C70-NOM, hydrophobicity and porous structure of the plant Allium cepa cell wall, and the amphiphilic structure and endocytosis of the plasma cell membrane of both Allium cepa and HT-29 cells. Chapter 6 summarizes and rationalizes results obtained from the entire dissertation research. Future work inspired by this research is presented at the end of the chapter. Specifically, this dissertation is structured to embody the following essential and complementary chapters: (1) Chapter 1: Literature review (2) Chapter 2: Nano-Eco interactions at the whole organism level; (3) Chapter 3: Nano-Eco interactions at the cellular level; (4) Chapter 4: Nano-Bio interactions at the cellular level; (5) Chapter 5: Parallel comparison

  1. Bioinformatics for systems biology

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Krawetz, Stephen A

    2009-01-01

    ..., requires an unprecedented level of development to collect, manage and mine the data for interesting associations. To begin to understand this information we now rely on statistical analysis to aid in our selection of the fruit from the tree. However, this often takes us on a journey into a new field for which we are not yet prepared. Samuel Joh...

  2. Electromagnetic fields in biological systems

    CERN Document Server

    Lin, James C

    2016-01-01

    As wireless technology becomes more sophisticated and accessible to more users, the interactions of electromagnetic fields with biological systems have captured the interest not only of the scientific community but also the general public. Unintended or deleterious biological effects of electromagnetic fields and radiation may indicate grounds for health and safety precautions in their use. Spanning static fields to terahertz waves, Electromagnetic Fields in Biological Systems explores the range of consequences these fields have on the human body. With contributions by an array of experts, topics discussed include: Essential interactions and field coupling phenomena, highlighting their importance in research on biological effects and in scientific, industrial, and medical applications Electric field interactions in cells, focusing on ultrashort, pulsed high-intensity fields The effect of exposure to naturally occurring and human-made static, low-frequency, and pulsed magnetic fields in biological systems Dosi...

  3. Validation of systems biology models

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Hasdemir, D.

    2015-01-01

    The paradigm shift from qualitative to quantitative analysis of biological systems brought a substantial number of modeling approaches to the stage of molecular biology research. These include but certainly are not limited to nonlinear kinetic models, static network models and models obtained by the

  4. Systems biology approaches and pathway tools for investigating cardiovascular disease

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Wheelock, C.E.; Wheelock, A.M.; Kawashima, S.; Diez, D.; Kanehisa, M.; Erk, M. van; Kleemann, R.; Haeggström, J.Z.; Goto, S.

    2009-01-01

    Systems biology aims to understand the nonlinear interactions of multiple biomolecular components that characterize a living organism. One important aspect of systems biology approaches is to identify the biological pathways or networks that connect the differing elements of a system, and examine

  5. Text mining for systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fluck, Juliane; Hofmann-Apitius, Martin

    2014-02-01

    Scientific communication in biomedicine is, by and large, still text based. Text mining technologies for the automated extraction of useful biomedical information from unstructured text that can be directly used for systems biology modelling have been substantially improved over the past few years. In this review, we underline the importance of named entity recognition and relationship extraction as fundamental approaches that are relevant to systems biology. Furthermore, we emphasize the role of publicly organized scientific benchmarking challenges that reflect the current status of text-mining technology and are important in moving the entire field forward. Given further interdisciplinary development of systems biology-orientated ontologies and training corpora, we expect a steadily increasing impact of text-mining technology on systems biology in the future. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Nutritional Systems Biology: Definitions and Approaches

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Panagiotou, Gianni; Nielsen, Jens

    2009-01-01

    waiting for a predictive knowledge of genetic variation. It is widely recognized that systems and network biology has the potential to increase our understanding of how nutrition influences metabolic pathways and homeostasis, how this regulation is disturbed in a diet-related disease, and to what extent...... individual genotypes contribute to such diseases....

  7. Understanding the Intersections between Metabolism and Cancer Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vander Heiden, Matthew G; DeBerardinis, Ralph J

    2017-02-09

    Transformed cells adapt metabolism to support tumor initiation and progression. Specific metabolic activities can participate directly in the process of transformation or support the biological processes that enable tumor growth. Exploiting cancer metabolism for clinical benefit requires defining the pathways that are limiting for cancer progression and understanding the context specificity of metabolic preferences and liabilities in malignant cells. Progress toward answering these questions is providing new insight into cancer biology and can guide the more effective targeting of metabolism to help patients. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  8. Understanding the intersections between metabolism and cancer biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Heiden, Matthew G. Vander; DeBerardinis, Ralph J.

    2017-01-01

    Transformed cells adapt metabolism to support tumor initiation and progression. Specific metabolic activities can participate directly in the process of transformation or support the biological processes that enable tumor growth. Exploiting cancer metabolism for clinical benefit requires defining the pathways that are limiting for cancer progression and understanding the context specificity of metabolic preferences and liabilities in malignant cells. Progress towards answering these questions is providing new insight into cancer biology and can guide the more effective targeting of metabolism to help patients. PMID:28187287

  9. Advancing metabolic engineering through systems biology of industrial microorganisms

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dai, Zongjie; Nielsen, Jens

    2015-01-01

    resources. The objective of systems biology is to gain a comprehensive and quantitative understanding of living cells and can hereby enhance our ability to characterize and predict cellular behavior. Systems biology of industrial microorganisms is therefore valuable for metabolic engineering. Here we review...... the application of systems biology tools for the identification of metabolic engineering targets which may lead to reduced development time for efficient cell factories. Finally, we present some perspectives of systems biology for advancing metabolic engineering further....

  10. Carbon-13 NMR spectroscopy of biological systems

    CERN Document Server

    Beckmann, Nicolau

    1995-01-01

    This book is intended to provide an in-depth understanding of 13C NMR as a tool in biological research. 13C NMR has provided unique information concerning complex biological systems, from proteins and nucleic acids to animals and humans. The subjects addressed include multidimensional heteronuclear techniques for structural studies of molecules in the liquid and solid states, the investigation of interactions in model membranes, the elucidation of metabolic pathwaysin vitro and in vivo on animals, and noninvasive metabolic studies performed on humans. The book is a unique mix of NMR methods and biological applications which makes it a convenient reference for those interested in research in this interdisciplinary area of physics, chemistry, biology, and medicine.Key Features* An interdisciplinary text with emphasis on both 13C NMR methodology and the relevant biological and biomedical issues* State-of-the-art 13C NMR techniques are described; Whenever possible, their advantages over other approaches are empha...

  11. Informing biological design by integration of systems and synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smolke, Christina D; Silver, Pamela A

    2011-03-18

    Synthetic biology aims to make the engineering of biology faster and more predictable. In contrast, systems biology focuses on the interaction of myriad components and how these give rise to the dynamic and complex behavior of biological systems. Here, we examine the synergies between these two fields. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  12. Development trend of radiation biology research-systems radiation biology

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Min Rui

    2010-01-01

    Radiation biology research has past 80 years. We have known much more about fundamentals, processes and results of biology effects induced by radiation and various factors that influence biology effects wide and deep, however many old and new scientific problems occurring in the field of radiation biology research remain to be illustrated. To explore and figure these scientific problems need systemic concept, methods and multi dimension view on the base of considerations of complexity of biology system, diversity of biology response, temporal and spatial process of biological effects during occurrence, and complex feed back network of biological regulations. (authors)

  13. Students' Energy Understanding Across Biology, Chemistry, and Physics Contexts

    Science.gov (United States)

    Opitz, S. T.; Neumann, K.; Bernholt, S.; Harms, U.

    2017-07-01

    Energy is considered both as a disciplinary core idea and as a concept cutting across science disciplines. Most previous approaches studied progressing energy understanding in specific disciplinary contexts, while disregarding the relation of understanding across them. Hence, this study provides a systematic analysis of cross-disciplinary energy learning. On the basis of a cross-sectional study with n = 742 students from grades 6, 8, and 10, we analyze students' progression in understanding energy across biology, chemistry, and physics contexts. The study is guided by three hypothetical scenarios that describe how the connection between energy understanding in the three disciplinary contexts changes across grade levels. These scenarios are compared using confirmatory factor analysis (CFA). The results suggest that, from grade 6 to grade 10, energy understanding in the three disciplinary contexts is highly interrelated, thus indicating a parallel progression of energy understanding in the three disciplinary contexts. In our study, students from grade 6 onwards appeared to have few problems to apply one energy understanding across the three disciplinary contexts. These findings were unexpected, as previous research concluded that students likely face difficulties in connecting energy learning across disciplinary boundaries. Potential reasons for these results and the characteristics of the observed cross-disciplinary energy understanding are discussed in the light of earlier findings and implications for future research, and the teaching of energy as a core idea and a crosscutting concept are addressed.

  14. Nanoscale technology in biological systems

    CERN Document Server

    Greco, Ralph S; Smith, R Lane

    2004-01-01

    Reviewing recent accomplishments in the field of nanobiology Nanoscale Technology in Biological Systems introduces the application of nanoscale matrices to human biology. It focuses on the applications of nanotechnology fabrication to biomedical devices and discusses new physical methods for cell isolation and manipulation and intracellular communication at the molecular level. It also explores the application of nanobiology to cardiovascular diseases, oncology, transplantation, and a range of related disciplines. This book build a strong background in nanotechnology and nanobiology ideal for

  15. Systems biology: leading the revolution in ecotoxicology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Garcia-Reyero, Natàlia; Perkins, Edward J

    2011-02-01

    The rapid development of new technologies such as transcriptomics, proteomics, and metabolomics (Omics) are changing the way ecotoxicology is practiced. The data deluge has begun with genomes of over 65 different aquatic species that are currently being sequenced, and many times that number with at least some level of transcriptome sequencing. Integrating these top-down methodologies is an essential task in the field of systems biology. Systems biology is a biology-based interdisciplinary field that focuses on complex interactions in biological systems, with the intent to model and discover emergent properties of the system. Recent studies demonstrate that Omics technologies provide valuable insight into ecotoxicity, both in laboratory exposures with model organisms and with animals exposed in the field. However, these approaches require a context of the whole animal and population to be relevant. Powerful approaches using reverse engineering to determine interacting networks of genes, proteins, or biochemical reactions are uncovering unique responses to toxicants. Modeling efforts in aquatic animals are evolving to interrelate the interacting networks of a system and the flow of information linking these elements. Just as is happening in medicine, systems biology approaches that allow the integration of many different scales of interaction and information are already driving a revolution in understanding the impacts of pollutants on aquatic systems. © 2010 SETAC.

  16. Understanding Digital Learning from the Perspective of Systems Dynamics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kok, Ayse

    2009-01-01

    The System Dynamics approach can be seen as a new way of understanding dynamical phenonema (natural, physical, biological, etc.) that occur in our daily lives taking into consideration not only single pairs of cause-effect variables, but the functioning of the system as a whole. This approach also provides the students with a new understanding in…

  17. Systems biology: the reincarnation of systems theory applied in biology?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolkenhauer, O

    2001-09-01

    With the availability of quantitative data on the transcriptome and proteome level, there is an increasing interest in formal mathematical models of gene expression and regulation. International conferences, research institutes and research groups concerned with systems biology have appeared in recent years and systems theory, the study of organisation and behaviour per se, is indeed a natural conceptual framework for such a task. This is, however, not the first time that systems theory has been applied in modelling cellular processes. Notably in the 1960s systems theory and biology enjoyed considerable interest among eminent scientists, mathematicians and engineers. Why did these early attempts vanish from research agendas? Here we shall review the domain of systems theory, its application to biology and the lessons that can be learned from the work of Robert Rosen. Rosen emerged from the early developments in the 1960s as a main critic but also developed a new alternative perspective to living systems, a concept that deserves a fresh look in the post-genome era of bioinformatics.

  18. Systems biology of cellular rhythms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldbeter, A; Gérard, C; Gonze, D; Leloup, J-C; Dupont, G

    2012-08-31

    Rhythms abound in biological systems, particularly at the cellular level where they originate from the feedback loops present in regulatory networks. Cellular rhythms can be investigated both by experimental and modeling approaches, and thus represent a prototypic field of research for systems biology. They have also become a major topic in synthetic biology. We review advances in the study of cellular rhythms of biochemical rather than electrical origin by considering a variety of oscillatory processes such as Ca++ oscillations, circadian rhythms, the segmentation clock, oscillations in p53 and NF-κB, synthetic oscillators, and the oscillatory dynamics of cyclin-dependent kinases driving the cell cycle. Finally we discuss the coupling between cellular rhythms and their robustness with respect to molecular noise.

  19. Systems Biology of Industrial Microorganisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Papini, Marta; Salazar, Margarita; Nielsen, Jens

    The field of industrial biotechnology is expanding rapidly as the chemical industry is looking towards more sustainable production of chemicals that can be used as fuels or building blocks for production of solvents and materials. In connection with the development of sustainable bioprocesses, it is a major challenge to design and develop efficient cell factories that can ensure cost efficient conversion of the raw material into the chemical of interest. This is achieved through metabolic engineering, where the metabolism of the cell factory is engineered such that there is an efficient conversion of sugars, the typical raw materials in the fermentation industry, into the desired product. However, engineering of cellular metabolism is often challenging due to the complex regulation that has evolved in connection with adaptation of the different microorganisms to their ecological niches. In order to map these regulatory structures and further de-regulate them, as well as identify ingenious metabolic engineering strategies that full-fill mass balance constraints, tools from systems biology can be applied. This involves both high-throughput analysis tools like transcriptome, proteome and metabolome analysis, as well as the use of mathematical modeling to simulate the phenotypes resulting from the different metabolic engineering strategies. It is in fact expected that systems biology may substantially improve the process of cell factory development, and we therefore propose the term Industrial Systems Biology for how systems biology will enhance the development of industrial biotechnology for sustainable chemical production.

  20. Radiation interactions with biological systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Islam, Muhammad Torequl

    2017-05-01

    The use of radiation, especially ionizing radiation (IR), is currently attracting great attention in the field of medical sciences. However, it should be mentioned that IR has both beneficial and harmful effects in biological systems. This review aims to focus on IR-mediated physiological events in a mechanistic way. Evidence from the databases, mainly from PUBMED and SCIENCE DIRECT were considered. IR directly and/or with their lyses products (indirect) causes oxidative stresses to biological systems. These activities may be localized and systematic. Otherwise, IR-induced non-/multi-targeted effects are also evident. IR in diagnosis and cancer radiotherapy is well-known. Reactive species produced by IR are not only beneficial, but also can exert harmful effects in a biological system such as aging, genetic instability and mutagenicity, membrane lysis and cell death, alteration of enzymatic activity and metabolic events, mitochondrial dysfunction, and even cancer. Additionally, DNA adducts formation, after IR-induced DNA breakage, is a cause of blockage of DNA repair capability with an increase in cellular radiosensitivity. These may allow cellular ruin even at low IR levels. Dependent on the dose, duration of action and quality, IR plays diverse roles in biological systems.

  1. Tunable promoters in systems biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mijakovic, Ivan; Petranovic, Dina; Jensen, Peter Ruhdal

    2005-01-01

    The construction of synthetic promoter libraries has represented a major breakthrough in systems biology, enabling the subtle tuning of enzyme activities. A number of tools are now available that allow the modulation of gene expression and the detection of changes in expression patterns. But, how...

  2. Using functional genetics to understand breast cancer biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ashworth, Alan; Bernards, Rene

    2010-07-01

    Genetic screens were for long the prerogative of those that studied model organisms. The discovery in 2001 that gene silencing through RNA interference (RNAi) can also be brought about in mammalian cells paved the way for large scale loss-of-function genetic screens in higher organisms. In this article, we describe how functional genetic studies can help us understand the biology of breast cancer, how it can be used to identify novel targets for breast cancer therapy, and how it can help in the identification of those patients that are most likely to respond to a given therapy.

  3. Discovery of Chemical Toxicity via Biological Networks and Systems Biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Perkins, Edward; Habib, Tanwir; Guan, Xin; Escalon, Barbara; Falciani, Francesco; Chipman, J.K.; Antczak, Philipp; Edwards, Stephen; Taylor, Ronald C.; Vulpe, Chris; Loguinov, Alexandre; Van Aggelen, Graham; Villeneuve, Daniel L.; Garcia-Reyero, Natalia

    2010-09-30

    Both soldiers and animals are exposed to many chemicals as the result of military activities. Tools are needed to understand the hazards and risks that chemicals and new materials pose to soldiers and the environment. We have investigated the potential of global gene regulatory networks in understanding the impact of chemicals on reproduction. We characterized effects of chemicals on ovaries of the model animal system, the Fathead minnow (Pimopheles promelas) connecting chemical impacts on gene expression to circulating blood levels of the hormones testosterone and estradiol in addition to the egg yolk protein vitellogenin. We describe the application of reverse engineering complex interaction networks from high dimensional gene expression data to characterize chemicals that disrupt the hypothalamus-pituitary-gonadal endocrine axis that governs reproduction in fathead minnows. The construction of global gene regulatory networks provides deep insights into how drugs and chemicals effect key organs and biological pathways.

  4. Cognition and Rhetoric: Biological Basis of Meaning and Understanding

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Francisco Arenas-Dolz

    2017-02-01

    Full Text Available The aim of this paper is twofold: on the one hand, to explore those approaches that understand cognitive processes as embodied and as a result of our interaction with the environment, and not merely as as a information processing system; and, on the other hand, to show their connexion with the neurophysiological mechanisms underlying meaning and understanding, giving and overview of some of the insights from recent studies in neurorhetorics.

  5. The Impact of Systems Biology on Bioprocessing

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Campbell, Kate; Xia, Jianye; Nielsen, Jens

    2017-01-01

    alongside mathematical modeling to characterize and predict cellular physiology. This approach can drive cycles of design, build, test, and learn implemented by metabolic engineers to optimize the cell factory performance. Streamlining of the design phase requires a clearer understanding of metabolism...... and its regulation, which can be achieved using quantitative and integrated omic characterization, alongside more advanced analytical methods. We discuss here the current impact of systems biology and challenges of closing the gap between bioprocessing and more traditional methods of chemical production....

  6. Seasonal allergic rhinitis and systems biology-oriented biomarker discovery

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Baars, E.W.; Nierop, A.F.M.; Savelkoul, H.F.J.

    2015-01-01

    There is an increasing interest in science and medicine in the systems approach. Instead of the reductionist approach that focuses on the physical and chemical properties of the individual components, systems biology aims to describe, understand, and explain from the complex biological systems

  7. Pathogen refuge: a key to understanding biological control.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Johnson, Kenneth B

    2010-01-01

    Pathogen refuge is the idea that some potentially infectious pathogen propagules are not susceptible to the influence of an antagonistic microbial agent. The existence of a refuge can be attributable to one or more factors, including temporal, spatial, structural, and probabilistic, or to the pathogen's evolved ability to acquire antagonist-free space prior to ingress into a plant host. Within a specific pathosystem, refuge size can be estimated in experiments by measuring the proportion of pathogen propagules that remain infective as a function of the amount of antagonist introduced to the system. Refuge size is influenced by qualities of specific antagonists and by environment but less so by the quantity of antagonist. Consequently, most efforts to improve and optimize biological control are in essence efforts to reduce refuge size. Antagonist mixtures, optimal timing of antagonist introductions, integrated biological and chemical control, environmental optimization, and the utilization of disarmed pathogens as antagonists are strategies with potential to minimize a pathogen refuge.

  8. [Circadian rhythms and systems biology].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Goldbeter, Albert; Gérard, Claude; Leloup, Jean-Christophe

    2010-01-01

    Cellular rhythms represent a field of choice for studies in system biology. The examples of circadian rhythms and of the cell cycle show how the experimental and modeling approaches contribute to clarify the conditions in which periodic behavior spontaneously arises in regulatory networks at the cellular level. Circadian rhythms originate from intertwined positive and negative feedback loops controlling the expression of several clock genes. Models can be used to address the dynamical bases of physiological disorders related to dysfunctions of the mammalian circadian clock. The cell cycle is driven by a network of cyclin-dependent kinases (Cdks). Modeled in the form of four modules coupled through multiple regulatory interactions, the Cdk network operates in an oscillatory manner in the presence of sufficient amounts of growth factor. For circadian rhythms and the cell cycle, as for other recently observed cellular rhythms, periodic behavior represents an emergent property of biological systems related to their regulatory structure.

  9. Ten questions about systems biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Joyner, Michael J; Pedersen, Bente K

    2011-01-01

    In this paper we raise 'ten questions' broadly related to 'omics', the term systems biology, and why the new biology has failed to deliver major therapeutic advances for many common diseases, especially diabetes and cardiovascular disease. We argue that a fundamentally narrow and reductionist...... perspective about the contribution of genes and genetic variants to disease is a key reason 'omics' has failed to deliver the anticipated breakthroughs. We then point out the critical utility of key concepts from physiology like homeostasis, regulated systems and redundancy as major intellectual tools...... common diseases. Finally, we attempt to integrate our critique of reductionism into a broader social framework about so-called translational research in specific and the root causes of common diseases in general. Throughout we offer ideas and suggestions that might be incorporated into the current...

  10. Biological Potential in Serpentinizing Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hoehler, Tori M.

    2016-01-01

    Generation of the microbial substrate hydrogen during serpentinization, the aqueous alteration of ultramafic rocks, has focused interest on the potential of serpentinizing systems to support biological communities or even the origin of life. However the process also generates considerable alkalinity, a challenge to life, and both pH and hydrogen concentrations vary widely across natural systems as a result of different host rock and fluid composition and differing physical and hydrogeologic conditions. Biological potential is expected to vary in concert. We examined the impact of such variability on the bioenergetics of an example metabolism, methanogenesis, using a cell-scale reactive transport model to compare rates of metabolic energy generation as a function of physicochemical environment. Potential rates vary over more than 5 orders of magnitude, including bioenergetically non-viable conditions, across the range of naturally occurring conditions. In parallel, we assayed rates of hydrogen metabolism in wells associated with the actively serpentinizing Coast Range Ophiolite, which includes conditions more alkaline and considerably less reducing than is typical of serpentinizing systems. Hydrogen metabolism is observed at pH approaching 12 but, consistent with the model predictions, biological methanogenesis is not observed.

  11. Interactive analysis of systems biology molecular expression data

    OpenAIRE

    Prabhakar Sunil; Salt David E; Kane Michael D; Stephenson Alan; Ouyang Qi; Zhang Mingwu; Burgner John; Buck Charles; Zhang Xiang

    2008-01-01

    Abstract Background Systems biology aims to understand biological systems on a comprehensive scale, such that the components that make up the whole are connected to one another and work through dependent interactions. Molecular correlations and comparative studies of molecular expression are crucial to establishing interdependent connections in systems biology. The existing software packages provide limited data mining capability. The user must first generate visualization data with a preferr...

  12. Anion binding in biological systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Feiters, Martin C [Department of Organic Chemistry, Institute for Molecules and Materials, Faculty of Science, Radboud University Nijmegen, Heyendaalseweg 135, 6525 AJ Nijmegen (Netherlands); Meyer-Klaucke, Wolfram [EMBL Hamburg Outstation at DESY, Notkestrasse 85, D-22607 Hamburg (Germany); Kostenko, Alexander V; Soldatov, Alexander V [Faculty of Physics, Southern Federal University, Sorge 5, Rostov-na-Donu, 344090 (Russian Federation); Leblanc, Catherine; Michel, Gurvan; Potin, Philippe [Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique and Universite Pierre et Marie Curie Paris-VI, Station Biologique de Roscoff, Place Georges Teissier, BP 74, F-29682 Roscoff cedex, Bretagne (France); Kuepper, Frithjof C [Scottish Association for Marine Science, Dunstaffnage Marine Laboratory, Oban, Argyll PA37 1QA, Scotland (United Kingdom); Hollenstein, Kaspar; Locher, Kaspar P [Institute of Molecular Biology and Biophysics, ETH Zuerich, Schafmattstrasse 20, Zuerich, 8093 (Switzerland); Bevers, Loes E; Hagedoorn, Peter-Leon; Hagen, Wilfred R, E-mail: m.feiters@science.ru.n [Department of Biotechnology, Delft University of Technology, Julianalaan 67, 2628 BC Delft (Netherlands)

    2009-11-15

    We compare aspects of biological X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) studies of cations and anions, and report on some examples of anion binding in biological systems. Brown algae such as Laminaria digitata (oarweed) are effective accumulators of I from seawater, with tissue concentrations exceeding 50 mM, and the vanadate-containing enzyme haloperoxidase is implicated in halide accumulation. We have studied the chemical state of iodine and its biological role in Laminaria at the I K edge, and bromoperoxidase from Ascophyllum nodosum (knotted wrack) at the Br K edge. Mo is essential for many forms of life; W only for certain archaea, such as Archaeoglobus fulgidus and the hyperthermophilic archaeon Pyrococcus furiosus, and some bacteria. The metals are bound and transported as their oxo-anions, molybdate and tungstate, which are similar in size. The transport protein WtpA from P. furiosus binds tungstate more strongly than molybdate, and is related in sequence to Archaeoglobus fulgidus ModA, of which a crystal structure is known. We have measured A. fulgidus ModA with tungstate at the W L{sub 3} (2p{sub 3/2}) edge, and compared the results with the refined crystal structure. XAS studies of anion binding are feasible even if only weak interactions are present, are biologically relevant, and give new insights in the spectroscopy.

  13. Anion binding in biological systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Feiters, Martin C; Meyer-Klaucke, Wolfram; Kostenko, Alexander V; Soldatov, Alexander V; Leblanc, Catherine; Michel, Gurvan; Potin, Philippe; Kuepper, Frithjof C; Hollenstein, Kaspar; Locher, Kaspar P; Bevers, Loes E; Hagedoorn, Peter-Leon; Hagen, Wilfred R

    2009-01-01

    We compare aspects of biological X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) studies of cations and anions, and report on some examples of anion binding in biological systems. Brown algae such as Laminaria digitata (oarweed) are effective accumulators of I from seawater, with tissue concentrations exceeding 50 mM, and the vanadate-containing enzyme haloperoxidase is implicated in halide accumulation. We have studied the chemical state of iodine and its biological role in Laminaria at the I K edge, and bromoperoxidase from Ascophyllum nodosum (knotted wrack) at the Br K edge. Mo is essential for many forms of life; W only for certain archaea, such as Archaeoglobus fulgidus and the hyperthermophilic archaeon Pyrococcus furiosus, and some bacteria. The metals are bound and transported as their oxo-anions, molybdate and tungstate, which are similar in size. The transport protein WtpA from P. furiosus binds tungstate more strongly than molybdate, and is related in sequence to Archaeoglobus fulgidus ModA, of which a crystal structure is known. We have measured A. fulgidus ModA with tungstate at the W L 3 (2p 3/2 ) edge, and compared the results with the refined crystal structure. XAS studies of anion binding are feasible even if only weak interactions are present, are biologically relevant, and give new insights in the spectroscopy.

  14. Anion binding in biological systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Feiters, Martin C.; Meyer-Klaucke, Wolfram; Kostenko, Alexander V.; Soldatov, Alexander V.; Leblanc, Catherine; Michel, Gurvan; Potin, Philippe; Küpper, Frithjof C.; Hollenstein, Kaspar; Locher, Kaspar P.; Bevers, Loes E.; Hagedoorn, Peter-Leon; Hagen, Wilfred R.

    2009-11-01

    We compare aspects of biological X-ray absorption spectroscopy (XAS) studies of cations and anions, and report on some examples of anion binding in biological systems. Brown algae such as Laminaria digitata (oarweed) are effective accumulators of I from seawater, with tissue concentrations exceeding 50 mM, and the vanadate-containing enzyme haloperoxidase is implicated in halide accumulation. We have studied the chemical state of iodine and its biological role in Laminaria at the I K edge, and bromoperoxidase from Ascophyllum nodosum (knotted wrack) at the Br K edge. Mo is essential for many forms of life; W only for certain archaea, such as Archaeoglobus fulgidus and the hyperthermophilic archaeon Pyrococcus furiosus, and some bacteria. The metals are bound and transported as their oxo-anions, molybdate and tungstate, which are similar in size. The transport protein WtpA from P. furiosus binds tungstate more strongly than molybdate, and is related in sequence to Archaeoglobus fulgidus ModA, of which a crystal structure is known. We have measured A. fulgidus ModA with tungstate at the W L3 (2p3/2) edge, and compared the results with the refined crystal structure. XAS studies of anion binding are feasible even if only weak interactions are present, are biologically relevant, and give new insights in the spectroscopy.

  15. Biomarkers in anal cancer: from biological understanding to stratified treatment.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jones, Christopher M; Goh, Vicky; Sebag-Montefiore, David; Gilbert, Duncan C

    2017-01-17

    Squamous cell carcinomas of the anus and anal canal represent a model of a cancer and perhaps the first where level 1 evidence supported primary chemoradiotherapy (CRT) in treating locoregional disease with curative intent. The majority of tumours are associated with infection with oncogenic subtypes of human papilloma virus and this plays a significant role in their sensitivity to treatment. However, not all tumours are cured with CRT and there remain opportunities to improve outcomes in terms of oncological control and also reducing late toxicities. Understanding the biology of ASCC promises to allow a more personalised approach to treatment, with the development and validation of a range of biomarkers and associated techniques that are the focus of this review.

  16. Understanding the biological responses of nanostructured metals and surfaces

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lowe, Terry C.; Reiss, Rebecca A.

    2014-08-01

    Metals produced by Severe Plastic Deformation (SPD) offer distinct advantages for medical applications such as orthopedic devices, in part because of their nanostructured surfaces. We examine the current theoretical foundations and state of knowledge for nanostructured biomaterials surface optimization within the contexts that apply to bulk nanostructured metals, differentiating how their microstructures impact osteogenesis, in particular, for Ultrafine Grained (UFG) titanium. Then we identify key gaps in the research to date, pointing out areas which merit additional focus within the scientific community. For example, we highlight the potential of next-generation DNA sequencing techniques (NGS) to reveal gene and non-coding RNA (ncRNA) expression changes induced by nanostructured metals. While our understanding of bio-nano interactions is in its infancy, nanostructured metals are already being marketed or developed for medical devices such as dental implants, spinal devices, and coronary stents. Our ability to characterize and optimize the biological response of cells to SPD metals will have synergistic effects on advances in materials, biological, and medical science.

  17. Multidisciplinary approaches to understanding collective cell migration in developmental biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Schumacher, Linus J; Kulesa, Paul M; McLennan, Rebecca; Baker, Ruth E; Maini, Philip K

    2016-06-01

    Mathematical models are becoming increasingly integrated with experimental efforts in the study of biological systems. Collective cell migration in developmental biology is a particularly fruitful application area for the development of theoretical models to predict the behaviour of complex multicellular systems with many interacting parts. In this context, mathematical models provide a tool to assess the consistency of experimental observations with testable mechanistic hypotheses. In this review, we showcase examples from recent years of multidisciplinary investigations of neural crest cell migration. The neural crest model system has been used to study how collective migration of cell populations is shaped by cell-cell interactions, cell-environmental interactions and heterogeneity between cells. The wide range of emergent behaviours exhibited by neural crest cells in different embryonal locations and in different organisms helps us chart out the spectrum of collective cell migration. At the same time, this diversity in migratory characteristics highlights the need to reconcile or unify the array of currently hypothesized mechanisms through the next generation of experimental data and generalized theoretical descriptions. © 2016 The Authors.

  18. Nonlinear dynamics in biological systems

    CERN Document Server

    Carballido-Landeira, Jorge

    2016-01-01

    This book presents recent research results relating to applications of nonlinear dynamics, focusing specifically on four topics of wide interest: heart dynamics, DNA/RNA, cell mobility, and proteins. The book derives from the First BCAM Workshop on Nonlinear Dynamics in Biological Systems, held in June 2014 at the Basque Center of Applied Mathematics (BCAM). At this international meeting, researchers from different but complementary backgrounds, including molecular dynamics, physical chemistry, bio-informatics and biophysics, presented their most recent results and discussed the future direction of their studies using theoretical, mathematical modeling and experimental approaches. Such was the level of interest stimulated that the decision was taken to produce this publication, with the organizers of the event acting as editors. All of the contributing authors are researchers working on diverse biological problems that can be approached using nonlinear dynamics. The book will appeal especially to applied math...

  19. Tunable promoters in systems biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mijakovic, Ivan; Petranovic, Dina; Jensen, Peter Ruhdal

    2005-01-01

    The construction of synthetic promoter libraries has represented a major breakthrough in systems biology, enabling the subtle tuning of enzyme activities. A number of tools are now available that allow the modulation of gene expression and the detection of changes in expression patterns. But, how...... does one choose the correct promoter and what are the appropriate methods for reading promoter strength? Furthermore, how fine should the tuning of gene expression be for some specific applications and how can the simultaneous and individual tuning of multiple genes be achieved? Some recent studies...

  20. Decision Making in Biological Systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tian, Chengzhe

    -dormancy transition is primarily mediated by (p)ppGpp fluctuation. In the second topic, we discuss the transition paths between two stable steady states. We construct a simple model of coupled bistable gene circuits and demonstrate the possibility of bifurcation of transition path in biology. We then construct...... a theory to predict whether a general coupled bistable system exhibits bifurcated path or not and verify the theory through numerical simulation. We also show that a primary function of bifurcated paths is to facilitate transition by lowering the associated action. In the third topic, we discuss...

  1. Systems biology of Microbial Communities

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Navid, A; Ghim, C; Fenley, A; Yoon, S; Lee, S; Almaas, E

    2008-04-11

    Microbes exist naturally in a wide range of environments, spanning the extremes of high acidity and high temperature to soil and the ocean, in communities where their interactions are significant. We present a practical discussion of three different approaches for modeling microbial communities: rate equations, individual-based modeling, and population dynamics. We illustrate the approaches with detailed examples. Each approach is best fit to different levels of system representation, and they have different needs for detailed biological input. Thus, this set of approaches is able to address the operation and function of microbial communities on a wide range of organizational levels.

  2. A CRISPR-based MLST Scheme for Understanding the Population Biology and Epidemiology of Salmonella Enterica

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-05-26

    N. Shariat, R. E. Timme, J. B. Pettengill, R. Barrangou, E. G. Dudley. Characterization and evolution of Salmonella CRISPR - Cas systems...Barrangou, Edward G. Dudley. Characterization of CRISPR - Cas in Salmonella, 3rd European CRISPR meeting. 14-MAY-14, . : , Margaret K. Kirchner, Nikki... CRISPRs Beyond subtyping approaches, we were motivated to understand the biology of CRISPR - Cas systems in Salmonella. We performed in-depth sequence

  3. Systems biology and biomarker discovery

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rodland, Karin D.

    2010-12-01

    Medical practitioners have always relied on surrogate markers of inaccessible biological processes to make their diagnosis, whether it was the pallor of shock, the flush of inflammation, or the jaundice of liver failure. Obviously, the current implementation of biomarkers for disease is far more sophisticated, relying on highly reproducible, quantitative measurements of molecules that are often mechanistically associated with the disease in question, as in glycated hemoglobin for the diagnosis of diabetes [1] or the presence of cardiac troponins in the blood for confirmation of myocardial infarcts [2]. In cancer, where the initial symptoms are often subtle and the consequences of delayed diagnosis often drastic for disease management, the impetus to discover readily accessible, reliable, and accurate biomarkers for early detection is compelling. Yet despite years of intense activity, the stable of clinically validated, cost-effective biomarkers for early detection of cancer is pathetically small and still dominated by a handful of markers (CA-125, CEA, PSA) first discovered decades ago. It is time, one could argue, for a fresh approach to the discovery and validation of disease biomarkers, one that takes full advantage of the revolution in genomic technologies and in the development of computational tools for the analysis of large complex datasets. This issue of Disease Markers is dedicated to one such new approach, loosely termed the 'Systems Biology of Biomarkers'. What sets the Systems Biology approach apart from other, more traditional approaches, is both the types of data used, and the tools used for data analysis - and both reflect the revolution in high throughput analytical methods and high throughput computing that has characterized the start of the twenty first century.

  4. Radical production in biological systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Johnson, J.R.; Akabani, G.

    1994-10-01

    This paper describes our effort to develop a metric for radiation exposure that is more fundamental than adsorbed dose and upon which a metric for exposure to chemicals could be based. This metric is based on the production of radicals by the two agents. Radicals produced by radiation in biological systems commonly assumed to be the same as those produced in water despite the presence of a variety of complex molecules. This may explain why the extensive efforts to describe the relationship between energy deposition (track structure) and molecular damage to DNA, based on the spectrum of radicals produced, have not been successful in explaining simple biological effects such as cell killing. Current models assume that DNA and its basic elements are immersed in water-like media and only model the production and diffusion of water-based radicals and their interaction with DNA structures; these models lack the cross sections associated with each macro-component of DNA and only treat water-based radicals. It has been found that such models are not realistic because DNA is not immersed in pure water. A computer code capable of simulating electron tracks, low-energy electrons, energy deposition in small molecules, and radical production and diffusion in water like media has been developed. This code is still in at a primitive stage and development is continuing. It is being used to study radical production by radiation, and radical diffusion and interactions in simple molecular systems following their production. We are extending the code to radical production by chemicals to complement our PBPK modeling efforts. It therefore has been developed primarily for use with radionuclides that are in biological materials, and not for radiation fields

  5. Dynamical systems in population biology

    CERN Document Server

    Zhao, Xiao-Qiang

    2017-01-01

    This research monograph provides an introduction to the theory of nonautonomous semiflows with applications to population dynamics. It develops dynamical system approaches to various evolutionary equations such as difference, ordinary, functional, and partial differential equations, and pays more attention to periodic and almost periodic phenomena. The presentation includes persistence theory, monotone dynamics, periodic and almost periodic semiflows, basic reproduction ratios, traveling waves, and global analysis of prototypical population models in ecology and epidemiology. Research mathematicians working with nonlinear dynamics, particularly those interested in applications to biology, will find this book useful. It may also be used as a textbook or as supplementary reading for a graduate special topics course on the theory and applications of dynamical systems. Dr. Xiao-Qiang Zhao is a University Research Professor at Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada. His main research interests involve applied...

  6. Understanding human metabolic physiology: a genome-to-systems approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mo, Monica L; Palsson, Bernhard Ø

    2009-01-01

    The intricate nature of human physiology renders its study a difficult undertaking, and a systems biology approach is necessary to understand the complex interactions involved. Network reconstruction is a key step in systems biology and represents a common denominator because all systems biology research on a target organism relies on such a representation. With the recent development of genome-scale human metabolic networks, metabolic systems analysis is now possible and has initiated a shift towards human systems biology. Here, we review the important aspects of reconstructing a bottom-up human metabolic network, the network's role in modeling human physiology and the necessity for a community-based consensus reconstruction of human metabolism to be established.

  7. Integrated oceanographic image understanding system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lybanon, Matthew; Peckinpaugh, Sarah H.; Holyer, Ronald J.; Cambridge, Vivian

    1991-04-01

    A system was assembled to study several aspects of locating ship targets from infrared imagery. The system was either placed on shore sites or installed on an aircraft to collect data on the scene. The primary sensor was an infrared camera which produced images of the scene at standard RS-l70 rates. Requirements that included real time operation dictated the use of a parallel architecture for this task. As no suitable commercial systems were avail able, a custom array of bit slice microprocessors was assembled for the task. Through extensive field tests strengths and limitations of the design have been identified. These lessons are being applied to the development of next generation systems. A gimbal mounted infrared camera with digitization circuitry presents a new 256 by 256 pixel image to the parallel pipelined array of 17 bit slice microprocessors thirty times a second. To extend processor performance beyond the standard commercial microprocessors. two basic bit slice designs were employed. The bit slice machines were highly tuned for the assigned tasks and algorithms. Unfortunately this restricted the desired flexibility to readily examine alternate algorithms. The fundamental architecture concept performed well quickly reducing the large array of data to manageable set of information. Real time operator displays were driven to monitor the progress of each test run. Results of the system operation were stored on video and digi tal recorders permitting more detailed analysis after each test. Non real time data reduction provided many insights into the system operation and to algorithm improvements. Substantial operator interaction. and data interpretation was required greatly slowing the post test analysis phase. Overwhelmed with data, the analysts focused on locating a few data segments of interest. Significant work remains in improving the interfaces between the field data and the powerful laboratory computers. Automation of the data analysis is also needed

  8. A guide to numerical modelling in systems biology

    CERN Document Server

    Deuflhard, Peter

    2015-01-01

    This book is intended for students of computational systems biology with only a limited background in mathematics. Typical books on systems biology merely mention algorithmic approaches, but without offering a deeper understanding. On the other hand, mathematical books are typically unreadable for computational biologists. The authors of the present book have worked hard to fill this gap. The result is not a book on systems biology, but on computational methods in systems biology. This book originated from courses taught by the authors at Freie Universität Berlin. The guiding idea of the courses was to convey those mathematical insights that are indispensable for systems biology, teaching the necessary mathematical prerequisites by means of many illustrative examples and without any theorems. The three chapters cover the mathematical modelling of biochemical and physiological processes, numerical simulation of the dynamics of biological networks, and identification of model parameters by means of comparisons...

  9. Magnetic Actuation of Biological Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lauback, Stephanie D.

    Central to the advancement of many biomedical and nanotechnology capabilities is the capacity to precisely control the motion of micro and nanostructures. These applications range from single molecule experiments to cell isolation and separation, to drug delivery and nanomachine manipulation. This dissertation focuses on actuation of biological micro- and nano-entities through the use of weak external magnetic fields, superparamagnetic beads, and ferromagnetic thin films. The magnetic platform presents an excellent method for actuation of biological systems due to its ability to directly control the motion of an array of micro and nanostructures in real-time with calibrated picoNewton forces. The energy landscape of two ferromagnetic thin film patterns (disks and zigzag wires) is experimentally explored and compared to corresponding theoretical models to quantify the applied forces and trajectories of superparamagnetic beads due to the magnetic traps. A magnetic method to directly actuate DNA nanomachines in real-time with nanometer resolution and sub-second response times using micromagnetic control was implemented through the use of stiff DNA micro-levers which bridged the large length scale mismatch between the micro-actuator and the nanomachine. Compared to current alternative methods which are limited in the actuation speeds and the number of reconfiguration states of DNA constructs, this magnetic approach enables fast actuation (˜ milliseconds) and reconfigurable conformations achieved through a continuous range of finely tuned steps. The system was initially tested through actuation of the stiff arm tethered to the surface, and two prototype DNA nanomachines (rotor and hinge) were successfully actuated using the stiff mechanical lever. These results open new possibilities in the development of functional robotic systems at the molecular scale. In exploiting the use of DNA stiff levers, a new technique was also developed to investigate the emergence of the

  10. Context Dependence of Students' Views about the Role of Equations in Understanding Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watkins, Jessica; Elby, Andrew

    2013-01-01

    Students' epistemological views about biology--their ideas about what "counts" as learning and understanding biology--play a role in how they approach their courses and respond to reforms. As introductory biology courses incorporate more physics and quantitative reasoning, student attitudes about the role of equations in biology become…

  11. Adapting to Biology: Maintaining Container-Closure System Compatibility with the Therapeutic Biologic Revolution.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Degrazio, Dominick

    Many pharmaceutical companies are transitioning their research and development drug product pipeline from traditional small-molecule injectables to the dimension of evolving therapeutic biologics. Important concerns associated with this changeover are becoming forefront, as challenges develop of varying complexity uncommon with the synthesis and production of traditional drugs. Therefore, alternative measures must be established that aim to preserve the efficacy and functionality of a biologic that might not be implemented for small molecules. Conserving protein stability is relative to perpetuating a net equilibrium of both intrinsic and extrinsic factors. Key to sustaining this balance is the ability of container-closure systems to maintain their compatibility with the ever-changing dynamics of therapeutic biologics. Failure to recognize and adjust the material properties of packaging components to support compatibility with therapeutic biologics can compromise patient safety, drug productivity, and biological stability. This review will examine the differences between small-molecule drugs and therapeutic biologics, lay a basic foundation for understanding the stability of therapeutic biologics, and demonstrate potential sources of container-closure systems' incompatibilities with therapeutic biologics at a mechanistic level. Many pharmaceutical companies are transitioning their research and development drug product pipeline from traditional small-molecule injectables to recombinantly derived therapeutic biologics. Concerns associated with this transformation are becoming prominent, as therapeutic biologics are uncharacteristic to small-molecule drugs. Maintaining the stability of a therapeutic biologic is a combination of balancing intrinsic factors and external elements within the biologic's microenvironment. An important aspect of this balance is relegated to the overall compatibility of primary, parenteral container-closure systems with therapeutic biologics

  12. Membrane Binding of Recoverin: From Mechanistic Understanding to Biological Functionality

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Timr, S.; Pleskot, Roman; Kadlec, J.; Kohagen, M.; Magarkar, A.; Jungwirth, P.

    2017-01-01

    Roč. 3, č. 8 (2017), s. 868-874 ISSN 2374-7943 Institutional support: RVO:61389030 Keywords : recoverin * membrane * myristoyl Subject RIV: CF - Physical ; Theoretical Chemistry OBOR OECD: Cell biology Impact factor: 7.481, year: 2016

  13. Complex biological and bio-inspired systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ecke, Robert E [Los Alamos National Laboratory

    2009-01-01

    The understanding and characterization ofthe fundamental processes of the function of biological systems underpins many of the important challenges facing American society, from the pathology of infectious disease and the efficacy ofvaccines, to the development of materials that mimic biological functionality and deliver exceptional and novel structural and dynamic properties. These problems are fundamentally complex, involving many interacting components and poorly understood bio-chemical kinetics. We use the basic science of statistical physics, kinetic theory, cellular bio-chemistry, soft-matter physics, and information science to develop cell level models and explore the use ofbiomimetic materials. This project seeks to determine how cell level processes, such as response to mechanical stresses, chemical constituents and related gradients, and other cell signaling mechanisms, integrate and combine to create a functioning organism. The research focuses on the basic physical processes that take place at different levels ofthe biological organism: the basic role of molecular and chemical interactions are investigated, the dynamics of the DNA-molecule and its phylogenetic role are examined and the regulatory networks of complex biochemical processes are modeled. These efforts may lead to early warning algorithms ofpathogen outbreaks, new bio-sensors to detect hazards from pathomic viruses to chemical contaminants. Other potential applications include the development of efficient bio-fuel alternative-energy processes and the exploration ofnovel materials for energy usages. Finally, we use the notion of 'coarse-graining,' which is a method for averaging over less important degrees of freedom to develop computational models to predict cell function and systems-level response to disease, chemical stress, or biological pathomic agents. This project supports Energy Security, Threat Reduction, and the missions of the DOE Office of Science through its efforts to

  14. Tracing organizing principles: Learning from the history of systems biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Green, Sara; Wolkenhauer, Olaf

    2014-01-01

    With the emergence of systems biology, the identification of organizing principles is being highlighted as a key research aim. Researchers attempt to “reverse engineer” the functional organization of biological systems using methodologies from mathematics, engineering and computer science while...... taking advantage of data produced by new experimental techniques. While systems biology is a relatively new approach, the quest for general principles of biological organization dates back to systems theoretic approaches in early and mid-twentieth century. The aim of this paper is to draw...... on this historical background in order to increase the understanding of the motivation behind the search for general principles and to clarify different epistemic aims within systems biology. We pinpoint key aspects of earlier approaches that also underlie the current practice. These are i) the focus on relational...

  15. Pathogenesis of biliary atresia: defining biology to understand clinical phenotypes

    Science.gov (United States)

    Asai, Akihiro; Miethke, Alexander; Bezerra, Jorge A.

    2016-01-01

    Biliary atresia is a severe cholangiopathy of early infancy that destroys extrahepatic bile ducts and disrupts bile flow. With a poorly defined disease pathogenesis, treatment consists of the surgical removal of duct remnants followed by hepatoportoenterostomy. Although this approach can improve the short-term outcome, the liver disease progresses to end-stage cirrhosis in most children. Further improvement in outcome will require a greater understanding of the mechanisms of biliary injury and fibrosis. Here, we review progress in the field, which has been fuelled by collaborative studies in larger patient cohorts and the development of cell culture and animal model systems to directly test hypotheses. Advances include the identification of phenotypic subgroups and stages of disease based on clinical, pathological and molecular features. Stronger evidence exists for viruses, toxins and gene sequence variations in the aetiology of biliary atresia, triggering a proinflammatory response that injures the duct epithelium and produces a rapidly progressive cholangiopathy. The immune response also activates the expression of type 2 cytokines that promote epithelial cell proliferation and extracellular matrix production by nonparenchymal cells. These advances provide insight into phenotype variability and might be relevant to the design of personalized trials to block progression of liver disease. PMID:26008129

  16. Applicability of Computational Systems Biology in Toxicology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kongsbak, Kristine Grønning; Hadrup, Niels; Audouze, Karine Marie Laure

    2014-01-01

    be used to establish hypotheses on links between the chemical and human diseases. Such information can also be applied for designing more intelligent animal/cell experiments that can test the established hypotheses. Here, we describe how and why to apply an integrative systems biology method......Systems biology as a research field has emerged within the last few decades. Systems biology, often defined as the antithesis of the reductionist approach, integrates information about individual components of a biological system. In integrative systems biology, large data sets from various sources...... and databases are used to model and predict effects of chemicals on, for instance, human health. In toxicology, computational systems biology enables identification of important pathways and molecules from large data sets; tasks that can be extremely laborious when performed by a classical literature search...

  17. Network Reconstruction of Dynamic Biological Systems

    OpenAIRE

    Asadi, Behrang

    2013-01-01

    Inference of network topology from experimental data is a central endeavor in biology, since knowledge of the underlying signaling mechanisms a requirement for understanding biological phenomena. As one of the most important tools in bioinformatics area, development of methods to reconstruct biological networks has attracted remarkable attention in the current decade. Integration of different data types can lead to remarkable improvements in our ability to identify the connectivity of differe...

  18. Introducing systems biology for nursing science.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Founds, Sandra A

    2009-07-01

    Systems biology expands on general systems theory as the "omics'' era rapidly progresses. Although systems biology has been institutionalized as an interdisciplinary framework in the biosciences, it is not yet apparent in nursing. This article introduces systems biology for nursing science by presenting an overview of the theory. This framework for the study of organisms from molecular to environmental levels includes iterations of computational modeling, experimentation, and theory building. Synthesis of complex biological processes as whole systems rather than isolated parts is emphasized. Pros and cons of systems biology are discussed, and relevance of systems biology to nursing is described. Nursing research involving molecular, physiological, or biobehavioral questions may be guided by and contribute to the developing science of systems biology. Nurse scientists can proactively incorporate systems biology into their investigations as a framework for advancing the interdisciplinary science of human health care. Systems biology has the potential to advance the research and practice goals of the National Institute for Nursing Research in the National Institutes of Health Roadmap initiative.

  19. Using STOQS to Understand Molecular Biology and Oceanographic Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    McCann, M. P.; Ryan, J. P.; Messié, M.; Harvey, J.; Cline, D.; Michisaki, R.

    2014-12-01

    Advances in technology enable us to collect massive amounts of diverse data. With the ability to collect more data, the problem of comparative analysis becomes increasing difficult. The Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute (MBARI) designed the Spatial Temporal Oceanographic Query System (STOQS) to create new capabilities for scientists to gain insight from data collected by oceanographic platforms. STOQS uses a geospatial database and a web-based user interface (UI) to allow scientists to explore large collections of data. The UI is optimized to provide a quick overview of data in spatial and temporal dimensions, as well as in parameter and platform space. A user may zoom into a feature of interest and select it, initiating a filter operation updating the UI with an overview of all the data in the new filtered selection. When details are desired, radio buttons and check boxes can be selected to generate a number of different types of visualizations. These include color-filled temporal section plots, parameter-parameter plots, and both 2D and 3D spatial visualizations. The ISO/IEC 19775-1, Extensible 3D (X3D) standard provides the technology for presenting 3D data in a web browser. STOQS has been in use at MBARI for four years and is helping us manage and visualize data from month-long multi-platform observational campaigns. These campaigns produce tens of millions of diverse measurements. These volumes are too great to really understand - even with an effective data exploration UI. Effective management of these diverse data in STOQS is achieved through a two-step harmonization process: 1) conversion of all data to OGC CF-NetCDF Discrete Sampling Geometry feature types and 2) loading all data into the STOQS data model. Having all of the data easily accessible via this data model made development of the UI possible. This same method of access is also being used for development of visualization and analysis programs for tasks that cannot be executed within the UI

  20. Towards a systems understanding of plant-microbe interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Akira eMine

    2014-08-01

    Full Text Available Plants are closely associated with microorganisms including pathogens and mutualists that influence plant fitness. Molecular genetic approaches have uncovered a number of signaling components from both plants and microbes and their mode of actions. However, signaling pathways are highly interconnected and influenced by diverse sets of environmental factors. Therefore, it is important to have systems views in order to understand the true nature of plant-microbe interactions. Indeed, systems biology approaches have revealed previously overlooked or misinterpreted properties of the plant immune signaling network. Experimental reconstruction of biological networks using exhaustive combinatorial mutants is particularly powerful to elucidate network structure and properties and relationships among network components. Recent advances in metagenomics of microbial communities associated with plants further point to the importance of systems approaches and open a research area of microbial community reconstruction. In this review, we highlight the importance of a systems understanding of plant-microbe interactions, with a special emphasis on reconstruction strategies.

  1. Philosophy of Systems and Synthetic Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Green, Sara

    2017-01-01

    This entry aims to clarify how systems and synthetic biology contribute to and extend discussions within philosophy of science. Unlike fields such as developmental biology or molecular biology, systems and synthetic biology are not easily demarcated by a focus on a specific subject area or level...... computational approaches, about the relation between living and artificial systems, and about the implications of interdisciplinary research for science and society. The entry can be openly accessed at the webpage of the Stanford Encyclopaedia of Philosophy: https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/systems-synthetic-biology/...... of organization. Rather, they are characterized by the development and application of mathematical, computational, and synthetic modeling strategies in response to complex problems and challenges within the life sciences. Proponents of systems and synthetic biology often stress the necessity of a perspective...

  2. Synthetic Biology: Engineering Living Systems from Biophysical Principles.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bartley, Bryan A; Kim, Kyung; Medley, J Kyle; Sauro, Herbert M

    2017-03-28

    Synthetic biology was founded as a biophysical discipline that sought explanations for the origins of life from chemical and physical first principles. Modern synthetic biology has been reinvented as an engineering discipline to design new organisms as well as to better understand fundamental biological mechanisms. However, success is still largely limited to the laboratory and transformative applications of synthetic biology are still in their infancy. Here, we review six principles of living systems and how they compare and contrast with engineered systems. We cite specific examples from the synthetic biology literature that illustrate these principles and speculate on their implications for further study. To fully realize the promise of synthetic biology, we must be aware of life's unique properties. Copyright © 2017 Biophysical Society. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Understanding Patterns for System of Systems Integration

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kazman, Rick; Schmid, Klaus; Nielsen, Claus Ballegård

    2013-01-01

    of systems integration patterns. These characteristics at the same time support the architecting process by highlighting important issues a SoS architect needs to consider. We discuss the consolidated template and illustrate it with an example pattern. We also discuss the integration of this novel pattern...

  4. Multilevel functional genomics data integration as a tool for understanding physiology: a network biology perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Davidsen, Peter K; Turan, Nil; Egginton, Stuart; Falciani, Francesco

    2016-02-01

    The overall aim of physiological research is to understand how living systems function in an integrative manner. Consequently, the discipline of physiology has since its infancy attempted to link multiple levels of biological organization. Increasingly this has involved mathematical and computational approaches, typically to model a small number of components spanning several levels of biological organization. With the advent of "omics" technologies, which can characterize the molecular state of a cell or tissue (intended as the level of expression and/or activity of its molecular components), the number of molecular components we can quantify has increased exponentially. Paradoxically, the unprecedented amount of experimental data has made it more difficult to derive conceptual models underlying essential mechanisms regulating mammalian physiology. We present an overview of state-of-the-art methods currently used to identifying biological networks underlying genomewide responses. These are based on a data-driven approach that relies on advanced computational methods designed to "learn" biology from observational data. In this review, we illustrate an application of these computational methodologies using a case study integrating an in vivo model representing the transcriptional state of hypoxic skeletal muscle with a clinical study representing muscle wasting in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease patients. The broader application of these approaches to modeling multiple levels of biological data in the context of modern physiology is discussed. Copyright © 2016 the American Physiological Society.

  5. Understanding the sorption and biotransformation of organic micropollutants in innovative biological wastewater treatment technologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alvarino, T; Suarez, S; Lema, J; Omil, F

    2018-02-15

    New technologies for wastewater treatment have been developed in the last years based on the combination of biological reactors operating under different redox conditions. Their efficiency in the removal of organic micropollutants (OMPs) has not been clearly assessed yet. This review paper is focussed on understanding the sorption and biotransformation of a selected group of 17 OMPs, including pharmaceuticals, hormones and personal care products, during biological wastewater treatment processes. Apart from considering the role of "classical" operational parameters, new factors such as biomass conformation and particle size, upward velocity applied or the addition of adsorbents have been considered. It has been found that the OMP removal by sorption not only depends on their physico-chemical characteristics and other parameters, such as the biomass conformation and particle size, or some operational conditions also relevant. Membrane biological reactors (MBR), have shown to enhance sorption and biotransformation of some OMPs. The same applies to technologies bases on direct addition of activated carbon in bioreactors. The OMP biotransformation degree and pathway is mainly driven by the redox potential and the primary substrate activity. The combination of different redox potentials in hybrid reactor systems can significantly enhance the overall OMP removal efficiency. Sorption and biotransformation can be synergistically promoted in biological reactors by the addition of activated carbon. The deeper knowledge of the main parameters influencing OMP removal provided by this review will allow optimizing the biological processes in the future. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  6. Introduction to Network Analysis in Systems Biology

    OpenAIRE

    Ma’ayan, Avi

    2011-01-01

    This Teaching Resource provides lecture notes, slides, and a problem set for a set of three lectures from a course entitled “Systems Biology: Biomedical Modeling.” The materials are from three separate lectures introducing applications of graph theory and network analysis in systems biology. The first lecture describes different types of intracellular networks, methods for constructing biological networks, and different types of graphs used to represent regulatory intracellular networks. The ...

  7. Systems Biology of lactic acid bacteria: a critical review.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Teusink, B.; Bachmann, H.; Molenaar, D.

    2011-01-01

    Understanding the properties of a system as emerging from the interaction of well described parts is the most important goal of Systems Biology. Although in the practice of Lactic Acid Bacteria (LAB) physiology we most often think of the parts as the proteins and metabolites, a wider interpretation

  8. Promoting Systems Thinking through Biology Lessons

    Science.gov (United States)

    Riess, Werner; Mischo, Christoph

    2010-04-01

    This study's goal was to analyze various teaching approaches within the context of natural science lessons, especially in biology. The main focus of the paper lies on the effectiveness of different teaching methods in promoting systems thinking in the field of Education for Sustainable Development. The following methods were incorporated into the study: special lessons designed to promote systems thinking, a computer-simulated scenario on the topic "ecosystem forest," and a combination of both special lessons and the computer simulation. These groups were then compared to a control group. A questionnaire was used to assess systems thinking skills of 424 sixth-grade students of secondary schools in Germany. The assessment differentiated between a conceptual understanding (measured as achievement score) and a reflexive justification (measured as justification score) of systems thinking. The following control variables were used: logical thinking, grades in school, memory span, and motivational goal orientation. Based on the pretest-posttest control group design, only those students who received both special instruction and worked with the computer simulation showed a significant increase in their achievement scores. The justification score increased in the computer simulation condition as well as in the combination of computer simulation and lesson condition. The possibilities and limits of promoting various forms of systems thinking by using realistic computer simulations are discussed.

  9. Towards a comprehensive understanding of emerging dynamics and function of pancreatic islets: A complex network approach. Comment on "Network science of biological systems at different scales: A review" by Gosak et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Loppini, Alessandro

    2018-03-01

    Complex network theory represents a comprehensive mathematical framework to investigate biological systems, ranging from sub-cellular and cellular scales up to large-scale networks describing species interactions and ecological systems. In their exhaustive and comprehensive work [1], Gosak et al. discuss several scenarios in which the network approach was able to uncover general properties and underlying mechanisms of cells organization and regulation, tissue functions and cell/tissue failure in pathology, by the study of chemical reaction networks, structural networks and functional connectivities.

  10. Marine biological data and information management system

    Digital Repository Service at National Institute of Oceanography (India)

    Sarupria, J.S.

    Indian National Oceanographic Data Centre (INODC) is engaged in developing a marine biological data and information management system (BIODIMS). This system will contain the information on zooplankton in the water column, zoobenthic biomass...

  11. The EvoDevoCI: A Concept Inventory for Gauging Students' Understanding of Evolutionary Developmental Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Perez, Kathryn E.; Hiatt, Anna; Davis, Gregory K.; Trujillo, Caleb; French, Donald P.; Terry, Mark; Price, Rebecca M.

    2013-01-01

    The American Association for the Advancement of Science 2011 report "Vision and Change in Undergraduate Biology Education" encourages the teaching of developmental biology as an important part of teaching evolution. Recently, however, we found that biology majors often lack the developmental knowledge needed to understand evolutionary…

  12. Understanding and controlling the enteric nervous system

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Boeckxstaens, G. E.

    2002-01-01

    The enteric nervous system or the `Little Brain' of the gut controls gastrointestinal motility and secretion, and is involved in visceral sensation. In this chapter, new developments in understanding the function of the enteric nervous system are described. In particular, the interaction of this

  13. Feedback dynamics and cell function: Why systems biology is called Systems Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolkenhauer, Olaf; Mesarovic, Mihajlo

    2005-05-01

    A new paradigm, like Systems Biology, should challenge the way research has been conducted previously. This Opinion article aims to present Systems Biology, not as the application of engineering principles to biology but as a merger of systems- and control theory with molecular- and cell biology. In our view, the central dogma of Systems Biology is that it is system dynamics that gives rise to the functioning and function of cells. The concepts of feedback regulation and control of pathways and the coordination of cell function are emphasized as an important area of Systems Biology research. The hurdles and risks for this area are discussed from the perspective of dynamic pathway modelling. Most of all, the aim of this article is to promote mathematical modelling and simulation as a part of molecular- and cell biology. Systems Biology is a success if it is widely accepted that there is nothing more practical than a good theory.

  14. Dimensionality reduction of bistable biological systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zakharova, A; Nikoloski, Z; Koseska, A

    2013-03-01

    Time hierarchies, arising as a result of interactions between system's components, represent a ubiquitous property of dynamical biological systems. In addition, biological systems have been attributed switch-like properties modulating the response to various stimuli across different organisms and environmental conditions. Therefore, establishing the interplay between these features of system dynamics renders itself a challenging question of practical interest in biology. Existing methods are suitable for systems with one stable steady state employed as a well-defined reference. In such systems, the characterization of the time hierarchies has already been used for determining the components that contribute to the dynamics of biological systems. However, the application of these methods to bistable nonlinear systems is impeded due to their inherent dependence on the reference state, which in this case is no longer unique. Here, we extend the applicability of the reference-state analysis by proposing, analyzing, and applying a novel method, which allows investigation of the time hierarchies in systems exhibiting bistability. The proposed method is in turn used in identifying the components, other than reactions, which determine the systemic dynamical properties. We demonstrate that in biological systems of varying levels of complexity and spanning different biological levels, the method can be effectively employed for model simplification while ensuring preservation of qualitative dynamical properties (i.e., bistability). Finally, by establishing a connection between techniques from nonlinear dynamics and multivariate statistics, the proposed approach provides the basis for extending reference-based analysis to bistable systems.

  15. Genomes, Phylogeny, and Evolutionary Systems Biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Medina, Monica

    2005-03-25

    With the completion of the human genome and the growing number of diverse genomes being sequenced, a new age of evolutionary research is currently taking shape. The myriad of technological breakthroughs in biology that are leading to the unification of broad scientific fields such as molecular biology, biochemistry, physics, mathematics and computer science are now known as systems biology. Here I present an overview, with an emphasis on eukaryotes, of how the postgenomics era is adopting comparative approaches that go beyond comparisons among model organisms to shape the nascent field of evolutionary systems biology.

  16. Graphics processing units in bioinformatics, computational biology and systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Nobile, Marco S; Cazzaniga, Paolo; Tangherloni, Andrea; Besozzi, Daniela

    2017-09-01

    Several studies in Bioinformatics, Computational Biology and Systems Biology rely on the definition of physico-chemical or mathematical models of biological systems at different scales and levels of complexity, ranging from the interaction of atoms in single molecules up to genome-wide interaction networks. Traditional computational methods and software tools developed in these research fields share a common trait: they can be computationally demanding on Central Processing Units (CPUs), therefore limiting their applicability in many circumstances. To overcome this issue, general-purpose Graphics Processing Units (GPUs) are gaining an increasing attention by the scientific community, as they can considerably reduce the running time required by standard CPU-based software, and allow more intensive investigations of biological systems. In this review, we present a collection of GPU tools recently developed to perform computational analyses in life science disciplines, emphasizing the advantages and the drawbacks in the use of these parallel architectures. The complete list of GPU-powered tools here reviewed is available at http://bit.ly/gputools. © The Author 2016. Published by Oxford University Press.

  17. Lipids in cell biology: how can we understand them better?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Muro, Eleonora; Atilla-Gokcumen, G. Ekin; Eggert, Ulrike S.

    2014-01-01

    Lipids are a major class of biological molecules and play many key roles in different processes. The diversity of lipids is on the same order of magnitude as that of proteins: cells express tens of thousands of different lipids and hundreds of proteins to regulate their metabolism and transport. Despite their clear importance and essential functions, lipids have not been as well studied as proteins. We discuss here some of the reasons why it has been challenging to study lipids and outline technological developments that are allowing us to begin lifting lipids out of their “Cinderella” status. We focus on recent advances in lipid identification, visualization, and investigation of their biophysics and perturbations and suggest that the field has sufficiently advanced to encourage broader investigation into these intriguing molecules. PMID:24925915

  18. Choroid plexus papillomas: advances in molecular biology and understanding of tumorigenesis.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Safaee, Michael; Oh, Michael C; Bloch, Orin; Sun, Matthew Z; Kaur, Gurvinder; Auguste, Kurtis I; Tihan, Tarik; Parsa, Andrew T

    2013-03-01

    Choroid plexus papillomas are rare, benign tumors originating from the choroid plexus. Although generally found within the ventricular system, they can arise ectopically in the brain parenchyma or disseminate throughout the neuraxis. We sought to review recent advances in our understanding of the molecular biology and oncogenic pathways associated with this disease. A comprehensive PubMed literature review was conducted to identify manuscripts discussing the clinical, molecular, and genetic features of choroid plexus papillomas. Articles concerning diagnosis, treatment, and long-term patient outcomes were also reviewed. The introduction of atypical choroid plexus papilloma as a distinct entity has increased the need for accurate histopathologic diagnosis. Advances in immunohistochemical staining have improved our ability to differentiate choroid plexus papillomas from other intracranial tumors or metastatic lesions using combinations of key markers and mitotic indices. Recent findings have implicated Notch3 signaling, the transcription factor TWIST1, platelet-derived growth factor receptor, and the tumor necrosis factor-related apoptosis-inducing ligand pathway in choroid plexus papilloma tumorigenesis. A combination of commonly occurring chromosomal duplications and deletions has also been identified. Surgical resection remains the standard of care, although chemotherapy and radiotherapy may be considered for recurrent or metastatic lesions. While generally considered benign, these tumors possess a complex biology that sheds insight into other choroid plexus tumors, particularly malignant choroid plexus carcinomas. Improving our understanding of the molecular biology, genetics, and oncogenic pathways associated with this tumor will allow for the development of targeted therapies and improved outcomes for patients with this disease.

  19. Decarboxylation mechanisms in biological system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Tingfeng; Huo, Lu; Pulley, Christopher; Liu, Aimin

    2012-08-01

    This review examines the mechanisms propelling cofactor-independent, organic cofactor-dependent and metal-dependent decarboxylase chemistry. Decarboxylation, the removal of carbon dioxide from organic acids, is a fundamentally important reaction in biology. Numerous decarboxylase enzymes serve as key components of aerobic and anaerobic carbohydrate metabolism and amino acid conversion. In the past decade, our knowledge of the mechanisms enabling these crucial decarboxylase reactions has continued to expand and inspire. This review focuses on the organic cofactors biotin, flavin, NAD, pyridoxal 5'-phosphate, pyruvoyl, and thiamin pyrophosphate as catalytic centers. Significant attention is also placed on the metal-dependent decarboxylase mechanisms. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Advancing metabolic engineering through systems biology of industrial microorganisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dai, Zongjie; Nielsen, Jens

    2015-12-01

    Development of sustainable processes to produce bio-based compounds is necessary due to the severe environmental problems caused by the use of fossil resources. Metabolic engineering can facilitate the development of highly efficient cell factories to produce these compounds from renewable resources. The objective of systems biology is to gain a comprehensive and quantitative understanding of living cells and can hereby enhance our ability to characterize and predict cellular behavior. Systems biology of industrial microorganisms is therefore valuable for metabolic engineering. Here we review the application of systems biology tools for the identification of metabolic engineering targets which may lead to reduced development time for efficient cell factories. Finally, we present some perspectives of systems biology for advancing metabolic engineering further. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. Nasopharyngeal carcinoma: understanding its molecular biology at a fine scale.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paul, Prosenjit; Deka, Himangshu; Malakar, Arup K; Halder, Binata; Chakraborty, Supriyo

    2018-01-01

    Among all cancers, the incidence of nasopharyngeal carcinoma (NPC) is quite high in the endemic regions. NPC is a head and neck cancer with poor survival rate, and is rare throughout most of the world but common in certain geographic areas, like southern Asia and some regions of North East India (Nagaland, Manipur, and Mizoram). A clear understanding of its etiology is still lacking, but NPC is widely suspected to be the result of both genetic susceptibility and exposure to environmental factors or Epstein-Barr virus infection. Diagnosis in the early stages needs a high index of clinical acumen, and, although most cross-sectional imaging investigations show the tumor with precision, confirmation is dependent on histology. This article reviews all related research reports on NPC histopathological classifications worldwide that have been published within the past 20 years. Genome-wide association studies suggested that there might be common disease mechanisms between that disease and NPC. Personalized management rules, quality assessment of life in patients, and an understanding of the essential mechanisms of recurrence could be directed toward research into recurrent NPC. Hence, this literature would offer otolaryngologists a deeper insight into the etiological and management aspects of NPC.

  2. Understanding the basic biology underlying the flavor world of children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Julie A. MENNELLA, Alison K. VENTURA

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Health organizations worldwide recommend that adults and children minimize intakes of excess energy and salty, sweet, and fatty foods (all of which are highly preferred tastes and eat diets richer in whole grains, low- and non- fat dairy products, legumes, fish, lean meat, fruits, and vegetables (many of which taste bitter. Despite such recommendations and the well-established benefits of these foods to human health, adults are not complying, nor are their children. A primary reason for this difficulty is the remarkably potent rewarding properties of the tastes and flavors of foods high in sweetness, saltiness, and fatness. While we cannot easily change children’s basic ingrained biology of liking sweets and avoiding bitterness, we can modulate their flavor preferences by providing early exposure, starting in utero, to a wide variety of flavors within healthy foods, such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Because the flavors of foods mothers eat during pregnancy and lactation also flavor amniotic fluid and breast milk and become preferred by infants, pregnant and lactating women should widen their food choices to include as many flavorful and healthy foods as possible. These experiences, combined with repeated exposure to nutritious foods and flavor variety during the weaning period and beyond, should maximize the chances that children will select and enjoy a healthier diet [Current Zoology 56 (6: 834–841, 2010].

  3. Tunable promoters in synthetic and systems biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dehli, Tore; Solem, Christian; Jensen, Peter Ruhdal

    2012-01-01

    in synthetic biology. A number of tools exist to manipulate the steps in between gene sequence and functional protein in living cells, but out of these the most straight-forward approach is to alter the gene expression level by manipulating the promoter sequence. Some of the promoter tuning tools available......Synthetic and systems biologists need standardized, modular and orthogonal tools yielding predictable functions in vivo. In systems biology such tools are needed to quantitatively analyze the behavior of biological systems while the efficient engineering of artificial gene networks is central...

  4. Metabolic systems biology: a brief primer.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Lindsay M

    2017-05-01

    In the early to mid-20th century, reductionism as a concept in biology was challenged by key thinkers, including Ludwig von Bertalanffy. He proposed that living organisms were specific examples of complex systems and, as such, they should display characteristics including hierarchical organisation and emergent behaviour. Yet the true study of complete biological systems (for example, metabolism) was not possible until technological advances that occurred 60 years later. Technology now exists that permits the measurement of complete levels of the biological hierarchy, for example the genome and transcriptome. The complexity and scale of these data require computational models for their interpretation. The combination of these - systems thinking, high-dimensional data and computation - defines systems biology, typically accompanied by some notion of iterative model refinement. Only sequencing-based technologies, however, offer full coverage. Other 'omics' platforms trade coverage for sensitivity, although the densely connected nature of biological networks suggests that full coverage may not be necessary. Systems biology models are often characterised as either 'bottom-up' (mechanistic) or 'top-down' (statistical). This distinction can mislead, as all models rely on data and all are, to some degree, 'middle-out'. Systems biology has matured as a discipline, and its methods are commonplace in many laboratories. However, many challenges remain, especially those related to large-scale data integration. © 2016 The Authors. The Journal of Physiology © 2016 The Physiological Society.

  5. An engineering design approach to systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Janes, Kevin A; Chandran, Preethi L; Ford, Roseanne M; Lazzara, Matthew J; Papin, Jason A; Peirce, Shayn M; Saucerman, Jeffrey J; Lauffenburger, Douglas A

    2017-07-17

    Measuring and modeling the integrated behavior of biomolecular-cellular networks is central to systems biology. Over several decades, systems biology has been shaped by quantitative biologists, physicists, mathematicians, and engineers in different ways. However, the basic and applied versions of systems biology are not typically distinguished, which blurs the separate aspirations of the field and its potential for real-world impact. Here, we articulate an engineering approach to systems biology, which applies educational philosophy, engineering design, and predictive models to solve contemporary problems in an age of biomedical Big Data. A concerted effort to train systems bioengineers will provide a versatile workforce capable of tackling the diverse challenges faced by the biotechnological and pharmaceutical sectors in a modern, information-dense economy.

  6. From structure of the complex to understanding of the biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Rossmann, Michael G., E-mail: mr@purdue.edu [Department of Biological Sciences, Purdue University, 915 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2054 (United States); Arisaka, Fumio [Graduate School and School of Bioscience and Biotechnology, Tokyo Institute of Technology, 5249 Nagatsuta-cho, Yokohama 226-8501-B39 (Japan); Battisti, Anthony J.; Bowman, Valorie D.; Chipman, Paul R.; Fokine, Andrei; Hafenstein, Susan [Department of Biological Sciences, Purdue University, 915 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2054 (United States); Kanamaru, Shuji [Department of Biological Sciences, Purdue University, 915 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2054 (United States); Graduate School and School of Bioscience and Biotechnology, Tokyo Institute of Technology, 5249 Nagatsuta-cho, Yokohama 226-8501-B39 (Japan); Kostyuchenko, Victor A. [Department of Biological Sciences, Purdue University, 915 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2054 (United States); Mesyanzhinov, Vadim V.; Shneider, Mikhail M. [Laboratory of Molecular Bioengineering, Shemyakin-Ovchinnikov Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry, 16/10 Miklukho-Maklaya Street, Moscow, 117997 (Russian Federation); Morais, Marc C.; Leiman, Petr G. [Department of Biological Sciences, Purdue University, 915 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2054 (United States); Palermo, Laura M.; Parrish, Colin R. [James A. Baker Institute, College of Veterinary Medicine, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853 (United States); Xiao, Chuan [Department of Biological Sciences, Purdue University, 915 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN 47907-2054 (United States)

    2007-01-01

    The most extensive structural information on viruses relates to apparently icosahedral virions and is based on X-ray crystallography and on cryo-electron microscopy single-particle reconstructions. This paper concerns itself with the study of the macromolecular complexes that constitute viruses, using structural hybrid techniques. The most extensive structural information on viruses relates to apparently icosahedral virions and is based on X-ray crystallography and on cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM) single-particle reconstructions. Both techniques lean heavily on imposing icosahedral symmetry, thereby obscuring any deviation from the assumed symmetry. However, tailed bacteriophages have icosahedral or prolate icosahedral heads that have one obvious unique vertex where the genome can enter for DNA packaging and exit when infecting a host cell. The presence of the tail allows cryo-EM reconstructions in which the special vertex is used to orient the head in a unique manner. Some very large dsDNA icosahedral viruses also develop special vertices thought to be required for infecting host cells. Similarly, preliminary cryo-EM data for the small ssDNA canine parvovirus complexed with receptor suggests that these viruses, previously considered to be accurately icosahedral, might have some asymmetric properties that generate one preferred receptor-binding site on the viral surface. Comparisons are made between rhinoviruses that bind receptor molecules uniformly to all 60 equivalent binding sites, canine parvovirus, which appears to have a preferred receptor-binding site, and bacteriophage T4, which gains major biological advantages on account of its unique vertex and tail organelle.

  7. First Steps in Computational Systems Biology: A Practical Session in Metabolic Modeling and Simulation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Reyes-Palomares, Armando; Sanchez-Jimenez, Francisca; Medina, Miguel Angel

    2009-01-01

    A comprehensive understanding of biological functions requires new systemic perspectives, such as those provided by systems biology. Systems biology approaches are hypothesis-driven and involve iterative rounds of model building, prediction, experimentation, model refinement, and development. Developments in computer science are allowing for ever…

  8. Systems biology of microbial exopolysaccharides production

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ozlem eAtes

    2015-12-01

    Full Text Available Exopolysaccharides (EPS produced by diverse group of microbial systems are rapidly emerging as new and industrially important biomaterials. Due to their unique and complex chemical structures and many interesting physicochemical and rheological properties with novel functionality, the microbial EPSs find wide range of commercial applications in various fields of the economy such as food, feed, packaging, chemical, textile, cosmetics and pharmaceutical industry, agriculture and medicine. EPSs are mainly associated with high-value applications and they have received considerable research attention over recent decades with their biocompatibility, biodegradability, and both environmental and human compatibility. However only a few microbial EPSs have achieved to be used commercially due to their high production costs. The emerging need to overcome economic hurdles and the increasing significance of microbial EPSs in industrial and medical biotechnology call for the elucidation of the interrelations between metabolic pathways and EPS biosynthesis mechanism in order to control and hence enhance its microbial productivity. Moreover a better understanding of biosynthesis mechanism is a significant issue for improvement of product quality and properties and also for the design of novel strains. Therefore a systems-based approach constitutes an important step towards understanding the interplay between metabolism and EPS biosynthesis and further enhances its metabolic performance for industrial application. In this review, primarily the microbial EPSs, their biosynthesis mechanism and important factors for their production will be discussed. After this brief introduction, recent literature on the application of omics technologies and systems biology tools for the improvement of production yields will be critically evaluated. Special focus will be given to EPSs with high market value such as xanthan, levan, pullulan and dextran.

  9. Systems Biology of Microbial Exopolysaccharides Production.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ates, Ozlem

    2015-01-01

    Exopolysaccharides (EPSs) produced by diverse group of microbial systems are rapidly emerging as new and industrially important biomaterials. Due to their unique and complex chemical structures and many interesting physicochemical and rheological properties with novel functionality, the microbial EPSs find wide range of commercial applications in various fields of the economy such as food, feed, packaging, chemical, textile, cosmetics and pharmaceutical industry, agriculture, and medicine. EPSs are mainly associated with high-value applications, and they have received considerable research attention over recent decades with their biocompatibility, biodegradability, and both environmental and human compatibility. However, only a few microbial EPSs have achieved to be used commercially due to their high production costs. The emerging need to overcome economic hurdles and the increasing significance of microbial EPSs in industrial and medical biotechnology call for the elucidation of the interrelations between metabolic pathways and EPS biosynthesis mechanism in order to control and hence enhance its microbial productivity. Moreover, a better understanding of biosynthesis mechanism is a significant issue for improvement of product quality and properties and also for the design of novel strains. Therefore, a systems-based approach constitutes an important step toward understanding the interplay between metabolism and EPS biosynthesis and further enhances its metabolic performance for industrial application. In this review, primarily the microbial EPSs, their biosynthesis mechanism, and important factors for their production will be discussed. After this brief introduction, recent literature on the application of omics technologies and systems biology tools for the improvement of production yields will be critically evaluated. Special focus will be given to EPSs with high market value such as xanthan, levan, pullulan, and dextran.

  10. Understanding the biological mechanisms of Zika virus disease ...

    International Development Research Centre (IDRC) Digital Library (Canada)

    This project will use advanced biomolecular, genomics and proteomics techniques to explain the molecular mechanisms by which the Zika virus infects and persists in the human body, how it affects the human reproductive and central nervous system, and how the risk of fetal abnormalities can be better predicted in infected ...

  11. Understanding the biological concept "bird": A kindergarten case study

    Science.gov (United States)

    Buchholz, Dilek

    The purpose of this qualitative, multiple case study of 14 students in a metropolitan public school in the Deep South was to find out, during a period of three months, what these kindergarten-aged children knew about birds, whether this knowledge represented current scientific thought, if such science instruction meaningfully affected their prior knowledge, and if so, what the factors during instruction that seemed to influence their understanding of the concept of bird were. The research was conducted in three phases; preinstruction interviews, instruction, and postinstruction interviews. The theoretical framework for this research was based on the Human Constructivism theory of learning (Mintzes, Wandersee and Novak, 1997). Instructional materials consisted of carefully chosen books (both fiction and non-fiction), guest speakers, field trips, a live bird in the classroom, students' observation journals, teacher-made classification and sorting activities, and picture-based concept maps. The findings suggest that young children's knowledge of birds was limited chiefly to birds' anatomical and morphological characteristics, with repeated references being made by the children to human characteristics. There was a positive, significant difference in young children's pre- and postinstruction scientific knowledge of birds. Although performance varied from child to child after instruction, most children were able to identify some common birds by name. Just one child resisted conceptual change. Kindergarten children's basic knowledge of bird behavior was limited to flight and eating. Although the children had more conceptual knowledge at the end, understanding still appeared to be shallow. The children did develop their skill in observing markedly. It also became evident that these kindergarten children needed more (a) experience in asking questions, (b) practice in techniques of visual representation, and (c) language development in order to be able to explain what they

  12. Japanese Children's Understanding of Notational Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Takahashi, Noboru

    2012-01-01

    This study examined Japanese children's understanding of two Japanese notational systems: "hiragana" and "kanji". In three experiments, 126 3- to 6-year-olds were asked to name words written in hiragana or kanji as they appeared with different pictures. Consistent with Bialystok ("Journal of Experimental Child…

  13. Understanding Nuclear Safety Culture: A Systemic Approach

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Afghan, A.N.

    2016-01-01

    The Fukushima accident was a systemic failure (Report by Director General IAEA on the Fukushima Daiichi Accident). Systemic failure is a failure at system level unlike the currently understood notion which regards it as the failure of component and equipment. Systemic failures are due to the interdependence, complexity and unpredictability within systems and that is why these systems are called complex adaptive systems (CAS), in which “attractors” play an important role. If we want to understand the systemic failures we need to understand CAS and the role of these attractors. The intent of this paper is to identify some typical attractors (including stakeholders) and their role within complex adaptive system. Attractors can be stakeholders, individuals, processes, rules and regulations, SOPs etc., towards which other agents and individuals are attracted. This paper will try to identify attractors in nuclear safety culture and influence of their assumptions on safety culture behavior by taking examples from nuclear industry in Pakistan. For example, if the nuclear regulator is an attractor within nuclear safety culture CAS then how basic assumptions of nuclear plant operators and shift in-charges about “regulator” affect their own safety behavior?

  14. EURASIP journal on bioinformatics & systems biology

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    2006-01-01

    "The overall aim of "EURASIP Journal on Bioinformatics and Systems Biology" is to publish research results related to signal processing and bioinformatics theories and techniques relevant to a wide...

  15. Understanding Biological Rates and their Temperature Dependence, from Enzymes to Ecosystems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Prentice, E.; Arcus, V. L.

    2017-12-01

    Temperature responses over various scales in biological systems follow a similar pattern; negative curvature results in an optimum temperature (Topt) for activity/growth/turnover, with decreases in rates on either side of Topt. Previously this downturn in rates at high temperatures has been attributed to enzyme denaturation, where a failing of the basic driving units of metabolism was used to describe curvature at the enzyme and organism level. However, recent developments in our understanding of the factors governing enzyme rates at different temperatures have guided a new understanding of the responses of biological systems. Enzymes catalyse reactions by driving the substrate through a high energy species, which is tightly bound to the enzyme. Macromolecular rate theory (MMRT) has recently been developed to account for the changes in the system brought about by this tight binding, specifically the change in the physical parameter heat capacity (ΔCǂp), and the effect this has on the temperature dependence of enzyme reactions. A negative ΔCǂp imparts the signature negative curvature to rates in the absence of denaturation, and finds that Topt, ΔCǂp and curvature are all correlated, placing constraints on biological systems. The simplest of cells comprise thousands of enzymatically catalysed reactions, functioning in series and in parallel in metabolic pathways to determine the overall growth rate of an organism. Intuitively, the temperature effects of enzymes play a role in determining the overall temperature dependence of an organism, in tandem with cellular level regulatory responses. However, the effect of individual Topt values and curvature on overall pathway behaviour is less apparent. Here, this is investigated in the context of MMRT through the in vitro characterisation of a six-step metabolic pathway to understand the steps in isolation and functioning in series. Pathway behaviour is found to be approximately an average of the properties of the

  16. Strategies for structuring interdisciplinary education in Systems Biology: an European perspective

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Cvijovic, Marija; Höfer, Thomas; Acimovic, Jure; Alberghina, Lilia; Almaas, Eivind; Besozzi, Daniela; Blomberg, Anders; Bretschneider, Till; Cascante, Marta; Collin, Olivier; Atauri, de Pedro; Depner, Cornelia; Dickinson, Robert; Dobrzynski, Maciej; Fleck, C.; Garcia-Ojalvo, Jordi; Gonze, Didier; Hahn, Jens; Hess, Heide Marie; Hollmann, Susanne; Krantz, Marcus; Kummer, Ursula; Lundh, Torbjörn; Martial, Gifta; Martins dos Santos, V.A.P.; Mauer-Oberthür, Angela; Regierer, Babette; Skene, Barbara; Stalidzans, Egils; Stelling, Jörg; Teusink, Bas; Workman, Christopher T.; Hohmann, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    Systems Biology is an approach to biology and medicine that has the potential to lead to a better understanding of how biological properties emerge from the interaction of genes, proteins, molecules, cells and organisms. The approach aims at elucidating how these interactions govern biological

  17. Computational Modeling, Formal Analysis, and Tools for Systems Biology.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ezio Bartocci

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available As the amount of biological data in the public domain grows, so does the range of modeling and analysis techniques employed in systems biology. In recent years, a number of theoretical computer science developments have enabled modeling methodology to keep pace. The growing interest in systems biology in executable models and their analysis has necessitated the borrowing of terms and methods from computer science, such as formal analysis, model checking, static analysis, and runtime verification. Here, we discuss the most important and exciting computational methods and tools currently available to systems biologists. We believe that a deeper understanding of the concepts and theory highlighted in this review will produce better software practice, improved investigation of complex biological processes, and even new ideas and better feedback into computer science.

  18. Sensitivity analysis approaches applied to systems biology models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zi, Z

    2011-11-01

    With the rising application of systems biology, sensitivity analysis methods have been widely applied to study the biological systems, including metabolic networks, signalling pathways and genetic circuits. Sensitivity analysis can provide valuable insights about how robust the biological responses are with respect to the changes of biological parameters and which model inputs are the key factors that affect the model outputs. In addition, sensitivity analysis is valuable for guiding experimental analysis, model reduction and parameter estimation. Local and global sensitivity analysis approaches are the two types of sensitivity analysis that are commonly applied in systems biology. Local sensitivity analysis is a classic method that studies the impact of small perturbations on the model outputs. On the other hand, global sensitivity analysis approaches have been applied to understand how the model outputs are affected by large variations of the model input parameters. In this review, the author introduces the basic concepts of sensitivity analysis approaches applied to systems biology models. Moreover, the author discusses the advantages and disadvantages of different sensitivity analysis methods, how to choose a proper sensitivity analysis approach, the available sensitivity analysis tools for systems biology models and the caveats in the interpretation of sensitivity analysis results.

  19. Glycoengineering in CHO cells: Advances in systems biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Tejwani, Vijay; Andersen, Mikael Rørdam; Nam, Jong Hyun

    2018-01-01

    are not well understood. A systems biology approach combining different technologies is needed for complete understanding of the molecular processes accounting for this variability and to open up new venues in cell line development. In this review, we describe several advances in genetic manipulation, modeling...

  20. Advances in reproductive biology and seed production systems of ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Eucalyptus globulus is the main eucalypt species grown in Australian plantations. The focus on seedling deployment systems, coupled with exploitation of large, open-pollinated base populations for breeding purposes over the last two decades, has required a detailed understanding of the reproductive biology of this ...

  1. Understanding Supply Networks from Complex Adaptive Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jamur Johnas Marchi

    2014-10-01

    Full Text Available This theoretical paper is based on complex adaptive systems (CAS that integrate dynamic and holistic elements, aiming to discuss supply networks as complex systems and their dynamic and co-evolutionary processes. The CAS approach can give clues to understand the dynamic nature and co-evolution of supply networks because it consists of an approach that incorporates systems and complexity. This paper’s overall contribution is to reinforce the theoretical discussion of studies that have addressed supply chain issues, such as CAS.

  2. A Philosophical Perspective on Evolutionary Systems Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    O'Malley, Maureen A; Soyer, Orkun S; Siegal, Mark L

    2015-03-01

    Evolutionary systems biology (ESB) is an emerging hybrid approach that integrates methods, models, and data from evolutionary and systems biology. Drawing on themes that arose at a cross-disciplinary meeting on ESB in 2013, we discuss in detail some of the explanatory friction that arises in the interaction between evolutionary and systems biology. These tensions appear because of different modeling approaches, diverse explanatory aims and strategies, and divergent views about the scope of the evolutionary synthesis. We locate these discussions in the context of long-running philosophical deliberations on explanation, modeling, and theoretical synthesis. We show how many of the issues central to ESB's progress can be understood as general philosophical problems. The benefits of addressing these philosophical issues feed back into philosophy too, because ESB provides excellent examples of scientific practice for the development of philosophy of science and philosophy of biology.

  3. Conceptions of Memorizing and Understanding in Learning, and Self-Efficacy Held by University Biology Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Tzu-Chiang; Liang, Jyh-Chong; Tsai, Chin-Chung

    2015-02-01

    This study aims to explore Taiwanese university students' conceptions of learning biology as memorizing or as understanding, and their self-efficacy. To this end, two questionnaires were utilized to survey 293 Taiwanese university students with biology-related majors. A questionnaire for measuring students' conceptions of memorizing and understanding was validated through an exploratory factor analysis of participants' responses. As for the questionnaire regarding the students' biology learning self-efficacy (BLSE), an exploratory factor analysis revealed a total of four factors including higher-order cognitive skills (BLSE-HC), everyday application (BLSE-EA), science communication (BLSE-SC), and practical works (BLSE-PW). The results of the cluster analysis according to the participants' conceptions of learning biology indicated that students in the two major clusters either viewed learning biology as understanding or possessed mixed-conceptions of memorizing and understanding. The students in the third cluster mainly focused on memorizing in their learning while the students in the fourth cluster showed less agreement with both conceptions of memorizing and understanding. This study further revealed that the conception of learning as understanding was positively associated with the BLSE of university students with biology-related majors. However, the conception of learning as memorizing may foster students' BLSE only when such a notion co-exists with the conception of learning with understanding.

  4. Research Update: Interfacing ultrasmall metal nanoclusters with biological systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shang, Li; Nienhaus, G. Ulrich

    2017-05-01

    Metal nanoclusters (NCs), a new type of nanomaterial with unique physicochemical properties, show great potential in many biomedical applications. Understanding their behavior in the complex biological environment is critical not only for designing highly efficient NC-based nanomedicines but also for elucidating the biological impact (e.g., toxicity) of these emerging nanomaterials. In this review, we give an overview of recent progress in exploring interactions of metal NCs with biological systems, including protein adsorption onto NCs, NC interactions with cells, and also the in vivo behavior of NCs. We also discuss the biological responses to the interactions, key parameters defining the interactions, and current challenges in the exploration of NCs in the complex biological environment.

  5. Contribution to the meaning and understanding of anticipatory systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kljajić, Miroljub

    2001-06-01

    The present article discusses the cybernetic method in the modelling and understanding of complex systems from the epistemological, semantic as well as psychological point of view. Biological and organisational systems are the most important among complex systems. According to Rosen [1] anticipatory systems is another name for complex systems because, in a way, they function to anticipate the future state in order to preserve its structure and functioning. This paper demonstrates a strong analogy between Rosen's modified definition of anticipatory systems [2] and decision-making through simulation in organisational systems. The possible meaning of several models modified in the anticipatory mode will also be discussed as for example: a) The modified Verhaulst Model and its anticipatory modification in the case of the description of human behavior, b) The Prey-Predator Model, and c) The Evans Market Model under different conditions of the demand and supply function.

  6. Systems biology of cellular membranes: a convergence with biophysics.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chabanon, Morgan; Stachowiak, Jeanne C; Rangamani, Padmini

    2017-09-01

    Systems biology and systems medicine have played an important role in the last two decades in shaping our understanding of biological processes. While systems biology is synonymous with network maps and '-omics' approaches, it is not often associated with mechanical processes. Here, we make the case for considering the mechanical and geometrical aspects of biological membranes as a key step in pushing the frontiers of systems biology of cellular membranes forward. We begin by introducing the basic components of cellular membranes, and highlight their dynamical aspects. We then survey the functions of the plasma membrane and the endomembrane system in signaling, and discuss the role and origin of membrane curvature in these diverse cellular processes. We further give an overview of the experimental and modeling approaches to study membrane phenomena. We close with a perspective on the converging futures of systems biology and membrane biophysics, invoking the need to include physical variables such as location and geometry in the study of cellular membranes. WIREs Syst Biol Med 2017, 9:e1386. doi: 10.1002/wsbm.1386 For further resources related to this article, please visit the WIREs website. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  7. On the analysis of complex biological supply chains: From Process Systems Engineering to Quantitative Systems Pharmacology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rao, Rohit T; Scherholz, Megerle L; Hartmanshenn, Clara; Bae, Seul-A; Androulakis, Ioannis P

    2017-12-05

    The use of models in biology has become particularly relevant as it enables investigators to develop a mechanistic framework for understanding the operating principles of living systems as well as in quantitatively predicting their response to both pathological perturbations and pharmacological interventions. This application has resulted in a synergistic convergence of systems biology and pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic modeling techniques that has led to the emergence of quantitative systems pharmacology (QSP). In this review, we discuss how the foundational principles of chemical process systems engineering inform the progressive development of more physiologically-based systems biology models.

  8. Conceptions of Memorizing and Understanding in Learning, and Self-Efficacy Held by University Biology Majors

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lin, Tzu-Chiang; Liang, Jyh-Chong; Tsai, Chin-Chung

    2015-01-01

    This study aims to explore Taiwanese university students' conceptions of learning biology as memorizing or as understanding, and their self-efficacy. To this end, two questionnaires were utilized to survey 293 Taiwanese university students with biology-related majors. A questionnaire for measuring students' conceptions of memorizing and…

  9. Analyzing Students' Understanding of Models and Modeling Referring to the Disciplines Biology, Chemistry, and Physics

    Science.gov (United States)

    Krell, Moritz; Reinisch, Bianca; Krüger, Dirk

    2015-01-01

    In this study, secondary school students' (N?=?617; grades 7 to 10) understanding of models and modeling was assessed using tasks which explicitly refer to the scientific disciplines of biology, chemistry, and physics and, as a control, to no scientific discipline. The students' responses are interpreted as their biology-, chemistry-, and…

  10. "Evo in the News:" Understanding Evolution and Students' Attitudes toward the Relevance of Evolutionary Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Infanti, Lynn M.; Wiles, Jason R.

    2014-01-01

    This investigation evaluated the effects of exposure to the "Evo in the News" section of the "Understanding Evolution" website on students' attitudes toward biological evolution in undergraduates in a mixed-majors introductory biology course at Syracuse University. Students' attitudes toward evolution and changes therein were…

  11. Biocellion: accelerating computer simulation of multicellular biological system models.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kang, Seunghwa; Kahan, Simon; McDermott, Jason; Flann, Nicholas; Shmulevich, Ilya

    2014-11-01

    Biological system behaviors are often the outcome of complex interactions among a large number of cells and their biotic and abiotic environment. Computational biologists attempt to understand, predict and manipulate biological system behavior through mathematical modeling and computer simulation. Discrete agent-based modeling (in combination with high-resolution grids to model the extracellular environment) is a popular approach for building biological system models. However, the computational complexity of this approach forces computational biologists to resort to coarser resolution approaches to simulate large biological systems. High-performance parallel computers have the potential to address the computing challenge, but writing efficient software for parallel computers is difficult and time-consuming. We have developed Biocellion, a high-performance software framework, to solve this computing challenge using parallel computers. To support a wide range of multicellular biological system models, Biocellion asks users to provide their model specifics by filling the function body of pre-defined model routines. Using Biocellion, modelers without parallel computing expertise can efficiently exploit parallel computers with less effort than writing sequential programs from scratch. We simulate cell sorting, microbial patterning and a bacterial system in soil aggregate as case studies. Biocellion runs on x86 compatible systems with the 64 bit Linux operating system and is freely available for academic use. Visit http://biocellion.com for additional information. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  12. Systems Biology and Stem Cell Pluripotency

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mashayekhi, Kaveh; Hall, Vanessa Jane; Freude, Kristine

    2016-01-01

    Recent breakthroughs in stem cell biology have accelerated research in the area of regenerative medicine. Over the past years, it has become possible to derive patient-specific stem cells which can be used to generate different cell populations for potential cell therapy. Systems biological...... improve systems biology and its uses in the field. In this chapter, we first give a general background on stem cell biology and regenerative medicine. Stem cell potency is introduced together with the hierarchy of stem cells ranging from pluripotent embryonic stem cells (ESCs) and induced pluripotent stem...... modeling of stem cell pluripotency and differentiation have largely been based on prior knowledge of signaling pathways, gene regulatory networks, and epigenetic factors. However, there is a great need to extend the complexity of the modeling and to integrate different types of data, which would further...

  13. Programming Morphogenesis through Systems and Synthetic Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Velazquez, Jeremy J; Su, Emily; Cahan, Patrick; Ebrahimkhani, Mo R

    2018-04-01

    Mammalian tissue development is an intricate, spatiotemporal process of self-organization that emerges from gene regulatory networks of differentiating stem cells. A major goal in stem cell biology is to gain a sufficient understanding of gene regulatory networks and cell-cell interactions to enable the reliable and robust engineering of morphogenesis. Here, we review advances in synthetic biology, single cell genomics, and multiscale modeling, which, when synthesized, provide a framework to achieve the ambitious goal of programming morphogenesis in complex tissues and organoids. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Cardiovascular Biology of the Incretin System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ussher, John R.; Drucker, Daniel J.

    2012-01-01

    Glucagon-like peptide-1 (GLP-1) is an incretin hormone that enhances glucose-stimulated insulin secretion and exerts direct and indirect actions on the cardiovascular system. GLP-1 and its related incretin hormone, glucose-dependent insulinotropic polypeptide (GIP), are rapidly inactivated by the enzyme dipeptidyl peptidase 4 (DPP-4), a key determinant of incretin bioactivity. Two classes of medications that enhance incretin action, GLP-1R agonists and DPP-4 inhibitors, are used for the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). We review herein the cardiovascular biology of GLP-1R agonists and DPP-4 inhibitors, including direct and indirect effects on cardiomyocytes, blood vessels, adipocytes, the control of blood pressure and postprandial lipoprotein secretion. Both GLP-1R activation and DPP-4 inhibition exert multiple cardioprotective actions in preclinical models of cardiovascular dysfunction, and short term studies in human subjects appear to demonstrate modest yet beneficial actions on cardiac function in subjects with ischemic heart disease. Incretin-based agents control body weight, improve glycemic control with a low risk of hypoglycemia, decrease blood pressure, inhibit the secretion of intestinal chylomicrons, and reduce inflammation in preclinical studies. Nevertheless, there is limited information on the cardiovascular actions of these agents in patients with diabetes and established cardiovascular disease. Hence, a more complete understanding of the cardiovascular risk:benefit ratio of incretin-based therapies will require completion of long term cardiovascular outcome studies currently underway in patients with T2DM. PMID:22323472

  15. Toward mechanical systems biology in bone.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Trüssel, Andreas; Müller, Ralph; Webster, Duncan

    2012-11-01

    Cyclic mechanical loading is perhaps the most important physiological factor regulating bone mass and shape in a way which balances optimal strength with minimal weight. This bone adaptation process spans multiple length and time scales. Forces resulting from physiological exercise at the organ scale are sensed at the cellular scale by osteocytes, which reside inside the bone matrix. Via biochemical pathways, osteocytes orchestrate the local remodeling action of osteoblasts (bone formation) and osteoclasts (bone resorption). Together these local adaptive remodeling activities sum up to strengthen bone globally at the organ scale. To resolve the underlying mechanisms it is required to identify and quantify both cause and effect across the different scales. Progress has been made at the different scales experimentally. Computational models of bone adaptation have been developed to piece together various experimental observations at the different scales into coherent and plausible mechanisms. However additional quantitative experimental validation is still required to build upon the insights which have already been achieved. In this review we discuss emerging as well as state of the art experimental and computational techniques and how they might be used in a mechanical systems biology approach to further our understanding of the mechanisms governing load induced bone adaptation, i.e., ways are outlined in which experimental and computational approaches could be coupled, in a quantitative manner to create more reliable multiscale models of bone.

  16. Dietary antioxidant synergy in chemical and biological systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wang, Sunan; Zhu, Fan

    2017-07-24

    Antioxidant (AOX) synergies have been much reported in chemical ("test-tube" based assays focusing on pure chemicals), biological (tissue culture, animal and clinical models), and food systems during the past decade. Tentative synergies differ from each other due to the composition of AOX and the quantification methods. Regeneration mechanism responsible for synergy in chemical systems has been discussed. Solvent effects could contribute to the artifacts of synergy observed in the chemical models. Synergy in chemical models may hardly be relevant to biological systems that have been much less studied. Apparent discrepancies exist in understanding the molecular mechanisms in both chemical and biological systems. This review discusses diverse variables associated with AOX synergy and molecular scenarios for explanation. Future research to better utilize the synergy is suggested.

  17. Integrative Systems Biology Visualization with MAYDAY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Symonsy Stephan

    2010-12-01

    Full Text Available Visualization is pivotal for gaining insight in systems biology data. As the size and complexity of datasets and supplemental information increases, an efficient, integrated framework for general and specialized views is necessary. MAYDAY is an application for analysis and visualization of general ‘omics’ data. It follows a trifold approach for data visualization, consisting of flexible data preprocessing, highly customizable data perspective plots for general purpose visualization and systems based plots. Here, we introduce two new systems biology visualization tools for MAYDAY. Efficiently implemented genomic viewers allow the display of variables associated with genomic locations. Multiple variables can be viewed using our new track-based ChromeTracks tool. A functional perspective is provided by visualizing metabolic pathways either in KEGG or BioPax format. Multiple options of displaying pathway components are available, including Systems Biology Graphical Notation (SBGN glyphs. Furthermore, pathways can be viewed together with gene expression data either as heatmaps or profiles.

  18. Statistical Model Checking for Biological Systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    David, Alexandre; Larsen, Kim Guldstrand; Legay, Axel

    2014-01-01

    Statistical Model Checking (SMC) is a highly scalable simulation-based verification approach for testing and estimating the probability that a stochastic system satisfies a given linear temporal property. The technique has been applied to (discrete and continuous time) Markov chains, stochastic...... timed automata and most recently hybrid systems using the tool Uppaal SMC. In this paper we enable the application of SMC to complex biological systems, by combining Uppaal SMC with ANIMO, a plugin of the tool Cytoscape used by biologists, as well as with SimBiology®, a plugin of Matlab to simulate...

  19. Understanding the Role of Biology in the Global Environment: NASA'S Mission to Planet Earth

    Science.gov (United States)

    Townsend, William F.

    1996-01-01

    NASA has long used the unique perspective of space as a means of expanding our understanding of how the Earth's environment functions. In particular, the linkages between land, air, water, and life-the elements of the Earth system-are a focus for NASA's Mission to Planet Earth. This approach, called Earth system science, blends together fields like meteorology, biology, oceanography, and atmospheric science. Mission to Planet Earth uses observations from satellites, aircraft, balloons, and ground researchers as the basis for analysis of the elements of the Earth system, the interactions between those elements, and possible changes over the coming years and decades. This information is helping scientists improve our understanding of how natural processes affect us and how we might be affecting them. Such studies will yield improved weather forecasts, tools for managing agriculture and forests, information for fishermen and local planners, and, eventually, an enhanced ability to predict how the climate will change in the future. NASA has designed Mission to Planet Earth to focus on five primary themes: Land Cover and Land Use Change; Seasonal to Interannual Climate Prediction; Natural Hazards; Long-Term Climate Variability; and Atmosphere Ozone.

  20. Ins and outs of systems biology vis-à-vis molecular biology: continuation or clear cut?

    Science.gov (United States)

    De Backer, Philippe; De Waele, Danny; Van Speybroeck, Linda

    2010-03-01

    The comprehension of living organisms in all their complexity poses a major challenge to the biological sciences. Recently, systems biology has been proposed as a new candidate in the development of such a comprehension. The main objective of this paper is to address what systems biology is and how it is practised. To this end, the basic tools of a systems biological approach are explored and illustrated. In addition, it is questioned whether systems biology 'revolutionizes' molecular biology and 'transcends' its assumed reductionism. The strength of this claim appears to depend on how molecular and systems biology are characterised and on how reductionism is interpreted. Doing credit to molecular biology and to methodological reductionism, it is argued that the distinction between molecular and systems biology is gradual rather than sharp. As such, the classical challenge in biology to manage, interpret and integrate biological data into functional wholes is further intensified by systems biology's use of modelling and bioinformatics, and by its scale enlargement.

  1. Role of systems pharmacology in understanding drug adverse events

    Science.gov (United States)

    Berger, Seth I.; Iyengar, Ravi

    2011-01-01

    Systems pharmacology involves the application of systems biology approaches, combining large-scale experimental studies with computational analyses, to the study of drugs, drug targets, and drug effects. Many of these initial studies have focused on identifying new drug targets, new uses of known drugs, and systems-level properties of existing drugs. This review focuses on systems pharmacology studies that aim to better understand drug side effects and adverse events. By studying the drugs in the context of cellular networks, these studies provide insights into adverse events caused by off-targets of drugs as well as adverse events-mediated complex network responses. This allows rapid identification of biomarkers for side effect susceptibility. In this way, systems pharmacology will lead to not only newer and more effective therapies, but safer medications with fewer side effects. PMID:20803507

  2. Photosynthetic system as a biological functional element

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Zakhidov, E.A.; Zakhidova, M.A.; Kasymdzhanov, M.A.; Kurbanov, S.S.; Nematov, Sh.K.; Khabibullaev, P.K.

    2005-01-01

    Photosynthetic apparatus of high plants and photosynthetic bacteria is essentially autonomic system in terms of genetics and structural -functional properties located in specific medium, a bio-membrane. Processes of light absorption and exciton migration in light harvesting antenna, separation and further transfer of charges in reaction centers have specific features, which may be used for application of these objects as key elements in construction of future biological functional elements. Progress in study and genetic modification of photosynthetic membranes achieved during the last decade opens great prospects in development biological functional elements and systems. The main characteristics of photosynthetic system for these purposes are: (i) energy conversion processes in the first light phase of the photosynthesis have very short periods, up to picoseconds, which indicates possibility of creation of ultrafast functional elements on their basis; (ii) characteristics sizes of photosynthetic units, 10-100 nm, and possibility to arrange regularly disposed elements in relevant membranes could be prospective point for creation of nano structures and on their basis relevant biologic functional elements; (iii) elements based on modified photosynthetic apparatus and bio-membranes might be efficiently created by methods of gene engineering and manipulation, that open huge opportunities for development of read biological functional systems. In the paper structural-functional properties and characteristics of high plants and purple photosynthetic bacteria, which may be useful for creation of future biological functional elements are considered. (author)

  3. Proposition of diagnostic tool to provide indicatives about the understanding of biological knowledge and their interrelationships

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana Maria de Andrade Caldeira

    2016-06-01

    Full Text Available This paper describes the developing and validating steps of a Likert’s evaluative scale. The aim is to systematize the answers of Biological Sciences students about to: 1 Understanding or notunderstanding thescientific knowledge; and 2.If there is a relationship amongscientific concepts in order to contemplate a systemic thinking about natural phenomena. The described scale was validated by Cronbach's Alpha tests (α = 0.741, KMO (0.779 and Bartlett (0.000 and a Multivariate Analysis was fulfilled, typePrincipal Component Analysis (PCA. We understood that this kind of instrument allows a large amount of data to be collected and it groups can be compared efficiently, which justified the development of evaluative scale presented here.

  4. Dependency visualization for complex system understanding

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Smart, J. Allison Cory [Univ. of California, Davis, CA (United States)

    1994-09-01

    With the volume of software in production use dramatically increasing, the importance of software maintenance has become strikingly apparent. Techniques now sought and developed for reverse engineering and design extraction and recovery. At present, numerous commercial products and research tools exist which are capable of visualizing a variety of programming languages and software constructs. The list of new tools and services continues to grow rapidly. Although the scope of the existing commercial and academic product set is quite broad, these tools still share a common underlying problem. The ability of each tool to visually organize object representations is increasingly impaired as the number of components and component dependencies within systems increases. Regardless of how objects are defined, complex ``spaghetti`` networks result in nearly all large system cases. While this problem is immediately apparent in modem systems analysis involving large software implementations, it is not new. As will be discussed in Chapter 2, related problems involving the theory of graphs were identified long ago. This important theoretical foundation provides a useful vehicle for representing and analyzing complex system structures. While the utility of directed graph based concepts in software tool design has been demonstrated in literature, these tools still lack the capabilities necessary for large system comprehension. This foundation must therefore be expanded with new organizational and visualization constructs necessary to meet this challenge. This dissertation addresses this need by constructing a conceptual model and a set of methods for interactively exploring, organizing, and understanding the structure of complex software systems.

  5. Using views of Systems Biology Cloud: application for model building.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruebenacker, Oliver; Blinov, Michael

    2011-03-01

    A large and growing network ("cloud") of interlinked terms and records of items of Systems Biology knowledge is available from the web. These items include pathways, reactions, substances, literature references, organisms, and anatomy, all described in different data sets. Here, we discuss how the knowledge from the cloud can be molded into representations (views) useful for data visualization and modeling. We discuss methods to create and use various views relevant for visualization, modeling, and model annotations, while hiding irrelevant details without unacceptable loss or distortion. We show that views are compatible with understanding substances and processes as sets of microscopic compounds and events respectively, which allows the representation of specializations and generalizations as subsets and supersets respectively. We explain how these methods can be implemented based on the bridging ontology Systems Biological Pathway Exchange (SBPAX) in the Systems Biology Linker (SyBiL) we have developed.

  6. Continuum analysis of biological systems conserved quantities, fluxes and forces

    CERN Document Server

    Suraishkumar, G K

    2014-01-01

    This book addresses the analysis, in the continuum regime, of biological systems at various scales, from the cellular level to the industrial one. It presents both fundamental conservation principles (mass, charge, momentum and energy) and relevant fluxes resulting from appropriate driving forces, which are important for the analysis, design and operation of biological systems. It includes the concept of charge conservation, an important principle for biological systems that is not explicitly covered in any other book of this kind. The book is organized in five parts: mass conservation; charge conservation; momentum conservation; energy conservation; and multiple conservations simultaneously applied. All mathematical aspects are presented step by step, allowing any reader with a basic mathematical background (calculus, differential equations, linear algebra, etc.) to follow the text with ease. The book promotes an intuitive understanding of all the relevant principles and in so doing facilitates their applica...

  7. Systems Biology Knowledgebase for a New Era in Biology A Genomics:GTL Report from the May 2008 Workshop

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Gregurick, S.; Fredrickson, J. K.; Stevens, R.

    2009-03-01

    Biology has entered a systems-science era with the goal to establish a predictive understanding of the mechanisms of cellular function and the interactions of biological systems with their environment and with each other. Vast amounts of data on the composition, physiology, and function of complex biological systems and their natural environments are emerging from new analytical technologies. Effectively exploiting these data requires developing a new generation of capabilities for analyzing and managing the information. By revealing the core principles and processes conserved in collective genomes across all biology and by enabling insights into the interplay between an organism's genotype and its environment, systems biology will allow scientific breakthroughs in our ability to project behaviors of natural systems and to manipulate and engineer managed systems. These breakthroughs will benefit Department of Energy (DOE) missions in energy security, climate protection, and environmental remediation.

  8. Understanding and Modeling Teams As Dynamical Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Jamie C. Gorman

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available By its very nature, much of teamwork is distributed across, and not stored within, interdependent people working toward a common goal. In this light, we advocate a systems perspective on teamwork that is based on general coordination principles that are not limited to cognitive, motor, and physiological levels of explanation within the individual. In this article, we present a framework for understanding and modeling teams as dynamical systems and review our empirical findings on teams as dynamical systems. We proceed by (a considering the question of why study teams as dynamical systems, (b considering the meaning of dynamical systems concepts (attractors; perturbation; synchronization; fractals in the context of teams, (c describe empirical studies of team coordination dynamics at the perceptual-motor, cognitive-behavioral, and cognitive-neurophysiological levels of analysis, and (d consider the theoretical and practical implications of this approach, including new kinds of explanations of human performance and real-time analysis and performance modeling. Throughout our discussion of the topics we consider how to describe teamwork using equations and/or modeling techniques that describe the dynamics. Finally, we consider what dynamical equations and models do and do not tell us about human performance in teams and suggest future research directions in this area.

  9. Heavy ion action on biological systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Kiefer, J. [Giessen Univ. (Germany). Zentrum fuer Radiologie; Brend`amour, M. [Giessen Univ. (Germany). Zentrum fuer Radiologie; Stoll, U. [Giessen Univ. (Germany). Zentrum fuer Radiologie

    1996-02-01

    Life is governed by molecular processes, particularly involving the expression and conservation of genetic information. Heavy ions deposit large amount of energy at very small scale comparable to the essential molecular structures of biological systems. This paper illustrates the special aspects of heavy ion radiobiology from a fundamental point of view. After a short summary of the structure and function of biological systems, concentrating on the cell and its constituents, the pattern of energy deposition by heavy ions is discussed. Experimental examples are the induction of molecular changes in deoxyribonucleic acid, cell killing and the formation of mutations. It is shown that a close link exists between the physical parameters and the inactivation of biological functions that is not restricted to direct particle traversals but may also be brought about by the action of far-reaching secondary electrons. (orig.).

  10. Radionuclide Imaging Technologies for Biological Systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Howell, Calvin R. [Duke Univ., Durham, NC (United States); Reid, Chantal D. [Duke Univ., Durham, NC (United States); Weisenberger, Andrew G. [Thomas Jefferson National Accelerator Facility (TJNAF), Newport News, VA (United States)

    2014-05-14

    The main objective of this project is to develop technologies and experimental techniques for studying the dynamics of physiological responses of plants to changes in their interface with the local environment and to educate a new generation of scientists in an interdisciplinary environment of biology, physics and engineering. Also an important goal is to perform measurements to demonstrate the new data that can be produced and made available to the plant-biology community using the imaging technologies and experimental techniques developed in this project. The study of the plant-environment interface includes a wide range of topics in plant physiology, e.g., the root-soil interface, resource availability, impact of herbivores, influence of microbes on root surface, and responses to toxins in the air and soil. The initial scientific motivation for our work is to improve understanding of the mechanisms for physiological responses to abrupt changes in the local environment, in particular, the responses that result in short-term adjustments in resource (e.g., sugars, nutrients and water) allocations. Data of time-dependent responses of plants to environmental changes are essential in developing mechanistic models for substance intake and resource allocation. Our approach is to use radioisotope tracing techniques to study whole-plant and plant organ (e.g., leaves, stems, roots) dynamical responses to abrupt changes in environmental conditions such as concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere, nutrient availability and lighting. To this aim we are collaborating with the Radiation Detector and Imaging Group at the Thomas Jefferson National Laboratory Facility (JLab) to develop gamma-ray and beta particle imaging systems optimized for plant studies. The radioisotope tracing measurements are conducted at the Phytotron facility at Duke University. The Phytotron is a controlled environment plant research facility with a variety of plant growth chambers. One chamber

  11. Understanding Arsenic Dynamics in Agronomic Systems to ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    This review is on arsenic in agronomic systems, and covers processes that influence the entry of arsenic into the human food supply. The scope is from sources of arsenic (natural and anthropogenic) in soils, biogeochemical and rhizosphere processes that control arsenic speciation and availability, through to mechanisms of uptake by crop plants and potential mitigation strategies. This review makes a case for taking steps to prevent or limit crop uptake of arsenic, wherever possible, and to work toward a long-term solution to the presence of arsenic in agronomic systems. The past two decades have seen important advances in our understanding of how biogeochemical and physiological processes influence human exposure to soil arsenic, and thus must now prompt an informed reconsideration and unification of regulations to protect the quality of agricultural and residential soils. Consumption of staple foods such as rice, beverages such as apple juice, or vegetables grown in historically arsenic-contaminated soils is now recognized as a tangible route of arsenic exposure that, in many cases, is more significant than exposure from drinking water. Understanding the sources of arsenic to crop plants and the factors that influence them is key to reducing exposure now and preventing exposure in future. In addition to the abundant natural sources of arsenic, there are a large number of industrial and agricultural sources of arsenic to the soil; from mining wastes, coal fly

  12. Interactive analysis of systems biology molecular expression data

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Prabhakar Sunil

    2008-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Systems biology aims to understand biological systems on a comprehensive scale, such that the components that make up the whole are connected to one another and work through dependent interactions. Molecular correlations and comparative studies of molecular expression are crucial to establishing interdependent connections in systems biology. The existing software packages provide limited data mining capability. The user must first generate visualization data with a preferred data mining algorithm and then upload the resulting data into the visualization package for graphic visualization of molecular relations. Results Presented is a novel interactive visual data mining application, SysNet that provides an interactive environment for the analysis of high data volume molecular expression information of most any type from biological systems. It integrates interactive graphic visualization and statistical data mining into a single package. SysNet interactively presents intermolecular correlation information with circular and heatmap layouts. It is also applicable to comparative analysis of molecular expression data, such as time course data. Conclusion The SysNet program has been utilized to analyze elemental profile changes in response to an increasing concentration of iron (Fe in growth media (an ionomics dataset. This study case demonstrates that the SysNet software is an effective platform for interactive analysis of molecular expression information in systems biology.

  13. Context dependence of students' views about the role of equations in understanding biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Watkins, Jessica; Elby, Andrew

    2013-06-01

    Students' epistemological views about biology--their ideas about what "counts" as learning and understanding biology--play a role in how they approach their courses and respond to reforms. As introductory biology courses incorporate more physics and quantitative reasoning, student attitudes about the role of equations in biology become especially relevant. However, as documented in research in physics education, students' epistemologies are not always stable and fixed entities; they can be dynamic and context-dependent. In this paper, we examine an interview with an introductory student in which she discusses the use of equations in her reformed biology course. In one part of the interview, she expresses what sounds like an entrenched negative stance toward the role equations can play in understanding biology. However, later in the interview, when discussing a different biology topic, she takes a more positive stance toward the value of equations. These results highlight how a given student can have diverse ways of thinking about the value of bringing physics and math into biology. By highlighting how attitudes can shift in response to different tasks, instructional environments, and contextual cues, we emphasize the need to attend to these factors, rather than treating students' beliefs as fixed and stable.

  14. Systems Biology for Organotypic Cell Cultures

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Grego, Sonia [RTI International, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States); Dougherty, Edward R. [Texas A & M Univ., College Station, TX (United States); Alexander, Francis J. [Los Alamos National Lab. (LANL), Los Alamos, NM (United States); Auerbach, Scott S. [National Inst. of Environmental Health Sciences, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States); Berridge, Brian R. [GlaxoSmithKline, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States); Bittner, Michael L. [Translational Genomics Research Inst., Phoenix, AZ (United States); Casey, Warren [National Inst. of Environmental Health Sciences, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States); Cooley, Philip C. [RTI International, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States); Dash, Ajit [HemoShear Therapeutics, Charlottesville, VA (United States); Ferguson, Stephen S. [National Inst. of Environmental Health Sciences, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States); Fennell, Timothy R. [RTI International, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States); Hawkins, Brian T. [RTI International, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States); Hickey, Anthony J. [RTI International, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States); Kleensang, Andre [Johns Hopkins Univ., Baltimore, MD (United States). Center for Alternatives to Animal Testing; Liebman, Michael N. [IPQ Analytics, Kennett Square, PA (United States); Martin, Florian [Phillip Morris International, Neuchatel (Switzerland); Maull, Elizabeth A. [National Inst. of Environmental Health Sciences, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States); Paragas, Jason [Lawrence Livermore National Lab. (LLNL), Livermore, CA (United States); Qiao, Guilin [Defense Threat Reduction Agency, Ft. Belvoir, VA (United States); Ramaiahgari, Sreenivasa [National Inst. of Environmental Health Sciences, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States); Sumner, Susan J. [RTI International, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States); Yoon, Miyoung [The Hamner Inst. for Health Sciences, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States); ScitoVation, Research Triangle Park, NC (United States)

    2016-08-04

    Translating in vitro biological data into actionable information related to human health holds the potential to improve disease treatment and risk assessment of chemical exposures. While genomics has identified regulatory pathways at the cellular level, translation to the organism level requires a multiscale approach accounting for intra-cellular regulation, inter-cellular interaction, and tissue/organ-level effects. Tissue-level effects can now be probed in vitro thanks to recently developed systems of three-dimensional (3D), multicellular, “organotypic” cell cultures, which mimic functional responses of living tissue. However, there remains a knowledge gap regarding interactions across different biological scales, complicating accurate prediction of health outcomes from molecular/genomic data and tissue responses. Systems biology aims at mathematical modeling of complex, non-linear biological systems. We propose to apply a systems biology approach to achieve a computational representation of tissue-level physiological responses by integrating empirical data derived from organotypic culture systems with computational models of intracellular pathways to better predict human responses. Successful implementation of this integrated approach will provide a powerful tool for faster, more accurate and cost-effective screening of potential toxicants and therapeutics. On September 11, 2015, an interdisciplinary group of scientists, engineers, and clinicians gathered for a workshop in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, to discuss this ambitious goal. Participants represented laboratory-based and computational modeling approaches to pharmacology and toxicology, as well as the pharmaceutical industry, government, non-profits, and academia. Discussions focused on identifying critical system perturbations to model, the computational tools required, and the experimental approaches best suited to generating key data. This consensus report summarizes the discussions held.

  15. Cytoprotection of Human Endothelial Cells Against Oxidative Stress by 1-[2-cyano-3,12-dioxooleana-1,9(11)-dien-28-oyl]imidazole (CDDO-Im): Application of Systems Biology to Understand the Mechanism of Action

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-04-03

    c, Phillip D. Bowman b,nn a Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, School of Pharmacy, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine-Georgia Campus...right-tailed Fisher’s exact test was used to calculate a P value to determine the probability that each biological function assigned to that network...tailed Fisher’s exact test was used to calculate a P value to determine the probability that each biological function assigned to the entire data set

  16. Radiological/biological/aerosol removal system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Haslam, Jeffery J

    2015-03-17

    An air filter replacement system for existing buildings, vehicles, arenas, and other enclosed airspaces includes a replacement air filter for replacing a standard air filter. The replacement air filter has dimensions and air flow specifications that allow it to replace the standard air filter. The replacement air filter includes a filter material that removes radiological or biological or aerosol particles.

  17. Studies on Semantic Systems Chemical Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Bin

    2012-01-01

    Current "one disease, one target and one drug" drug development paradigm is under question as relatively few drugs have reached the market in the last two decades. Increasingly research focus is being placed on the study of drug action against biological systems as a whole rather than against a single component (called "Systems…

  18. Modular microfluidic system for biological sample preparation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rose, Klint A.; Mariella, Jr., Raymond P.; Bailey, Christopher G.; Ness, Kevin Dean

    2015-09-29

    A reconfigurable modular microfluidic system for preparation of a biological sample including a series of reconfigurable modules for automated sample preparation adapted to selectively include a) a microfluidic acoustic focusing filter module, b) a dielectrophoresis bacteria filter module, c) a dielectrophoresis virus filter module, d) an isotachophoresis nucleic acid filter module, e) a lyses module, and f) an isotachophoresis-based nucleic acid filter.

  19. How do biological systems escape 'chaotic' state?

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    B J Rao

    2018-02-13

    Feb 13, 2018 ... triggering 'escape from homeostasis' (Nijhout et al. 2014) where phenotypes begin to become less stable and eventually turn into fully unstable state, the start of 'chaos' in a system. Therefore, the key to biological designs is to stay close to or within the 'homeostatic plateau' and resist drifting into 'chaos'.

  20. Notions of radiation chemistry in biological systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mastro, N.L. del.

    1989-10-01

    The present paper examines some aspects of the direct and indirect biological radiation effects: pair formation, free radicals, superoxide ion, hydrogen peroxide, hydroxyl radical, oxygen singlet together with the endogen radioprotector mechanisms of organisms and the ways in which an improved radioresistance of biochemical systems can be achieved. (author) [pt

  1. Quantifying electron transfer reactions in biological systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Sjulstok, Emil Sjulstok; Olsen, Jógvan Magnus Haugaard; Solov'yov, Ilia A

    2015-01-01

    to deduce the driving force for the electron transfer reaction and to establish those interactions that play the major role in propelling the electron. The suggested approach is seen as a general recipe to treat electron transfer events in biological systems computationally, and we utilize it to describe...

  2. Micromechanics of engineered and biological systems

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Microsystems are good examples of integrated engineered systems of small size. Although this .... In develop- mental biology, the application of controlled forces on growing embryos is shown to help in under- standing ..... Optimization is a useful tool for synthesis. Many optimal synthesis methods have been developed for.

  3. Effect of Process-Oriented Guided-Inquiry Learning on Non-majors Biology Students' Understanding of Biological Classification

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wozniak, Breann M.

    The purpose of this study was to examine the effect of process-oriented guided-inquiry learning (POGIL) on non-majors college biology students' understanding of biological classification. This study addressed an area of science instruction, POGIL in the non-majors college biology laboratory, which has yet to be qualitatively and quantitatively researched. A concurrent triangulation mixed methods approach was used. Students' understanding of biological classification was measured in two areas: scores on pre and posttests (consisting of 11 multiple choice questions), and conceptions of classification as elicited in pre and post interviews and instructor reflections. Participants were Minnesota State University, Mankato students enrolled in BIOL 100 Summer Session. One section was taught with the traditional curriculum (n = 6) and the other section in the POGIL curriculum (n = 10) developed by the researcher. Three students from each section were selected to take part in pre and post interviews. There were no significant differences within each teaching method (p group may have scored higher on the posttest (M = 8.830 +/- .477 vs. M = 7.330 +/- .330; z =-1.729, p = .084) and the traditional group may have scored higher on the pretest than the posttest (M = 8.333 +/- .333 vs M = 7.333 +/- .333; z = -1.650 , p = .099). Two themes emerged after the interviews and instructor reflections: 1) After instruction students had a more extensive understanding of classification in three areas: vocabulary terms, physical characteristics, and types of evidence used to classify. Both groups extended their understanding, but only POGIL students could explain how molecular evidence is used in classification. 2) The challenges preventing students from understanding classification were: familiar animal categories and aquatic habitats, unfamiliar organisms, combining and subdividing initial groupings, and the hierarchical nature of classification. The POGIL students were the only group to

  4. Visualizing dimensionality reduction of systems biology data

    OpenAIRE

    Lehrmann, Andreas; Huber, Michael; Polatkan, Aydin C.; Pritzkau, Albert; Nieselt, Kay

    2012-01-01

    One of the challenges in analyzing high-dimensional expression data is the detection of important biological signals. A common approach is to apply a dimension reduction method, such as principal component analysis. Typically, after application of such a method the data is projected and visualized in the new coordinate system, using scatter plots or profile plots. These methods provide good results if the data have certain properties which become visible in the new coordinate system and which...

  5. Systems Biology in Immunology – A Computational Modeling Perspective

    Science.gov (United States)

    Germain, Ronald N.; Meier-Schellersheim, Martin; Nita-Lazar, Aleksandra; Fraser, Iain D. C.

    2011-01-01

    Systems biology is an emerging discipline that combines high-content, multiplexed measurements with informatic and computational modeling methods to better understand biological function at various scales. Here we present a detailed review of the methods used to create computational models and conduct simulations of immune function, We provide descriptions of the key data gathering techniques employed to generate the quantitative and qualitative data required for such modeling and simulation and summarize the progress to date in applying these tools and techniques to questions of immunological interest, including infectious disease. We include comments on what insights modeling can provide that complement information obtained from the more familiar experimental discovery methods used by most investigators and why quantitative methods are needed to eventually produce a better understanding of immune system operation in health and disease. PMID:21219182

  6. A systems biology approach to study systemic inflammation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Bor-Sen; Wu, Chia-Chou

    2014-01-01

    Systemic inflammation needs a precise control on the sequence and magnitude of occurring events. The high throughput data on the host-pathogen interactions gives us an opportunity to have a glimpse on the systemic inflammation. In this article, a dynamic Candida albicans-zebrafish interactive infectious network is built as an example to demonstrate how systems biology approach can be used to study systematic inflammation. In particular, based on microarray data of C. albicans and zebrafish during infection, the hyphal growth, zebrafish, and host-pathogen intercellular PPI networks were combined to form an integrated infectious PPI network that helps us understand the systematic mechanisms underlying the pathogenicity of C. albicans and the immune response of the host. The signaling pathways for morphogenesis and hyphal growth of C. albicans were 2 significant interactions found in the intercellular PPI network. Two cellular networks were also developed corresponding to the different infection stages (adhesion and invasion), and then compared with each other to identify proteins to gain more insight into the pathogenic role of hyphal development in the C. albicans infection process. Important defense-related proteins in zebrafish were predicted using the same approach. This integrated network consisting of intercellular invasion and cellular defense processes during infection can improve medical therapies and facilitate development of new antifungal drugs.

  7. Understanding Complex Construction Systems Through Modularity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Jensen, Tor Clarke; Bekdik, Baris; Thuesen, Christian

    2014-01-01

    finds that the main driver of complexity is the fragmentation of the design and production, which causes the production modules to construct and install new product types and variants for each project as the designers are swapped for every project. The many interfaces are characteristics of an integral......This paper develops a framework for understanding complexity in construction projects by combining theories of complexity management and modularization. The framework incorporates three dimensions of product, process, and organizational modularity with the case of gypsum wall elements. The analysis...... system, rather than a modular, although the industry forces modular organizational structures. This creates a high complexity degree caused by the non-alignment of building parts and organizations and the frequent swapping of modules....

  8. Systemic thinking fundamentals for understanding problems and messes

    CERN Document Server

    Hester, Patrick T

    2014-01-01

    Whether you’re an academic or a practitioner, a sociologist, a manager, or an engineer, one can benefit from learning to think systemically.  Problems (and messes) are everywhere and they’re getting more complicated every day.  How we think about these problems determines whether or not we’ll be successful in understanding and addressing them.  This book presents a novel way to think about problems (and messes) necessary to attack these always-present concerns.  The approach draws from disciplines as diverse as mathematics, biology, and psychology to provide a holistic method for dealing with problems that can be applied to any discipline. This book develops the systemic thinking paradigm, and introduces practical guidelines for the deployment of a systemic thinking approach.

  9. A Thai pre-service teacher's understanding of nature of science in biology teaching

    Science.gov (United States)

    Srisawat, Akkarawat; Aiemsum-ang, Napapan; Yuenyong, Chokchai

    2018-01-01

    This study was conducted on the effect of understanding and instruction of the nature of science of Ms. Wanida, a pre-service student under science education program in biology, Faculty of Education, Khon Kaen University. Wanida was a teaching practicum student majoring in biology at Khon Kaen University Demonstration School (Modindaeng). She was teaching biology for 38 Grade 10 students. Methodology regarded interpretive paradigm. The study aimed to examine 1) Wanida's understanding of the nature of science, 2) Wanida's instruction of the nature of science, 3 students' understanding of the nature of science from Wanida's instruction, and 4) the effects of Wanida's understanding and instruction of the nature of science on students' understanding of the nature of science from Wanida's instruction. Tools of interpretation included teaching observation, a semi-structured interview, open-ended questionnaire, and an observation record form for the instruction of the nature of science. The data obtained was interpreted, encoded, and classified, using the descriptive statistics. The findings indicated that Wanida held good understanding of the nature of science. She could apply the deficient nature of science approach mostly, followed by the implicit nature of science approach. Unfortunately, she could not show her teaching as explicit nature of science. However, her students' the understanding of the nature of science was good.

  10. Understanding the biological activity of high rate algae ponds through the calculation of oxygen balances.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Arbib, Zouhayr; de Godos Crespo, Ignacio; Corona, Enrique Lara; Rogalla, Frank

    2017-06-01

    Microalgae culture in high rate algae ponds (HRAP) is an environmentally friendly technology for wastewater treatment. However, for the implementation of these systems, a better understanding of the oxygenation potential and the influence of climate conditions is required. In this work, the rates of oxygen production, consumption, and exchange with the atmosphere were calculated under varying conditions of solar irradiance and dilution rate during six months of operation in a real scale unit. This analysis allowed determining the biological response of these dynamic systems. The rates of oxygen consumption measured were considerably higher than the values calculated based on the organic loading rate. The response to light intensity in terms of oxygen production in the bioreactor was described with one of the models proposed for microalgae culture in dense concentrations. This model is based on the availability of light inside the culture and the specific response of microalgae to this parameter. The specific response to solar radiation intensity showed a reasonable stability in spite of the fluctuations due to meteorological conditions. The methodology developed is a useful tool for optimization and prediction of the performance of these systems.

  11. Systems biology of vaccination in the elderly.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Duraisingham, Sai S; Rouphael, Nadine; Cavanagh, Mary M; Nakaya, Helder I; Goronzy, Jorg J; Pulendran, Bali

    2013-01-01

    Aging population demographics, combined with suboptimal vaccine responses in the elderly, make the improvement of vaccination strategies in the elderly a developing public health issue. The immune system changes with age, with innate and adaptive cell components becoming increasingly dysfunctional. As such, vaccine responses in the elderly are impaired in ways that differ depending on the type of vaccine (e.g., live attenuated, polysaccharide, conjugate, or subunit) and the mediators of protection (e.g., antibody and/or T cell). The rapidly progressing field of systems biology has been shown to be useful in predicting immunogenicity and offering insights into potential mechanisms of protection in young adults. Future application of systems biology to vaccination in the elderly may help to identify gene signatures that predict suboptimal responses and help to identify more accurate correlates of protection. Moreover, the identification of specific defects may be used to target novel vaccination strategies that improve efficacy in elderly populations.

  12. Measuring cell identity in noisy biological systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Birnbaum, Kenneth D.; Kussell, Edo

    2011-01-01

    Global gene expression measurements are increasingly obtained as a function of cell type, spatial position within a tissue and other biologically meaningful coordinates. Such data should enable quantitative analysis of the cell-type specificity of gene expression, but such analyses can often be confounded by the presence of noise. We introduce a specificity measure Spec that quantifies the information in a gene's complete expression profile regarding any given cell type, and an uncertainty measure dSpec, which measures the effect of noise on specificity. Using global gene expression data from the mouse brain, plant root and human white blood cells, we show that Spec identifies genes with variable expression levels that are nonetheless highly specific of particular cell types. When samples from different individuals are used, dSpec measures genes’ transcriptional plasticity in each cell type. Our approach is broadly applicable to mapped gene expression measurements in stem cell biology, developmental biology, cancer biology and biomarker identification. As an example of such applications, we show that Spec identifies a new class of biomarkers, which exhibit variable expression without compromising specificity. The approach provides a unifying theoretical framework for quantifying specificity in the presence of noise, which is widely applicable across diverse biological systems. PMID:21803789

  13. Systems biology: A tool for charting the antiviral landscape.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bowen, James R; Ferris, Martin T; Suthar, Mehul S

    2016-06-15

    The host antiviral programs that are initiated following viral infection form a dynamic and complex web of responses that we have collectively termed as "the antiviral landscape". Conventional approaches to studying antiviral responses have primarily used reductionist systems to assess the function of a single or a limited subset of molecules. Systems biology is a holistic approach that considers the entire system as a whole, rather than individual components or molecules. Systems biology based approaches facilitate an unbiased and comprehensive analysis of the antiviral landscape, while allowing for the discovery of emergent properties that are missed by conventional approaches. The antiviral landscape can be viewed as a hierarchy of complexity, beginning at the whole organism level and progressing downward to isolated tissues, populations of cells, and single cells. In this review, we will discuss how systems biology has been applied to better understand the antiviral landscape at each of these layers. At the organismal level, the Collaborative Cross is an invaluable genetic resource for assessing how genetic diversity influences the antiviral response. Whole tissue and isolated bulk cell transcriptomics serves as a critical tool for the comprehensive analysis of antiviral responses at both the tissue and cellular levels of complexity. Finally, new techniques in single cell analysis are emerging tools that will revolutionize our understanding of how individual cells within a bulk infected cell population contribute to the overall antiviral landscape. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  14. Effects of Pesticides on Biological Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ergul Belge Kurutas

    2003-06-01

    Full Text Available The use of pesticid both in Turkey and other contries is widespread in order to combat against many pests which cause economical damages. However, pesticides in human pass through skin, respiratory or digestive systems and is metabolized by monooxygenase system dependent upon cytocrome P450 in liver. They also give rise to severe decreases cytochrome P450 and amount of "hem" enzyme activites of glucose-6-phosphatase, pyrophosphatase by stimulating lipid peroxidation on hepatic microsomes. In this study effects of pesticides on biological systems will be presented in genaral terms. [Archives Medical Review Journal 2003; 12(3.000: 215-228

  15. Radionuclides in groundwater flow system understanding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Erőss, Anita; Csondor, Katalin; Horváth, Ákos; Mádl-Szőnyi, Judit; Surbeck, Heinz

    2017-04-01

    Using radionuclides is a novel approach to characterize fluids of groundwater flow systems and understand their mixing. Particularly, in regional discharge areas, where different order flow systems convey waters with different temperature, composition and redox-state to the discharge zone. Radium and uranium are redox-sensitive parameters, which causes fractionation along groundwater flow paths. Discharging waters of regional flow systems are characterized by elevated total dissolved solid content (TDS), temperature and by reducing conditions, and therefore with negligible uranium content, whereas local flow systems have lower TDS and temperature and represent oxidizing environments, and therefore their radium content is low. Due to the short transit time, radon may appear in local systems' discharge, where its source is the soil zone. However, our studies revealed the importance of FeOOH precipitates as local radon sources throughout the adsorption of radium transported by the thermal waters of regional flow systems. These precipitates can form either by direct oxidizing of thermal waters at discharge, or by mixing of waters with different redox state. Therefore elevated radon content often occurs in regional discharge areas as well. This study compares the results of geochemical studies in three thermal karst areas in Hungary, focusing on radionuclides as natural tracers. In the Buda Thermal Karst, the waters of the distinct discharge areas are characterized by different temperature and chemical composition. In the central discharge area both lukewarm (20-35°C, 770-980 mg/l TDS) and thermal waters (40-65°C, 800-1350 mg/l TDS), in the South only thermal water discharge (33-43°C, 1450-1700 mg/l TDS) occur. Radionuclides helped to identify mixing of fluids and to infer the temperature and chemical composition of the end members for the central discharge area. For the southern discharge zone mixing components could not be identified, which suggests different cave

  16. Optoelectronic system and apparatus for connection to biological systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Okandan, Murat; Nielson, Gregory N.

    2018-03-06

    The present invention relates to a biological probe structure, as well as apparatuses, systems, and methods employing this structure. In particular embodiments, the structure includes a hermetically sealed unit configured to receive and transmit one or more optical signals. Furthermore, the structure can be implanted subcutaneously and interrogated externally. In this manner, a minimally invasive method can be employed to detect, treat, and/or assess the biological target. Additional methods and systems are also provided.

  17. Dynamic systems for everyone understanding how our world works

    CERN Document Server

    Ghosh, Asish

    2017-01-01

    Systems are everywhere and we are surrounded by them. We are a complex amalgam of systems that enable us to interact with an endless array of external systems in our daily lives. They are electrical, mechanical, social, biological, and many other types that control our environment and our well-being. By appreciating how these systems function, will broaden our understanding of how our world works. Readers from a variety of disciplines will benefit from the knowledge of system behavior they will gain from this book and will be able to apply those principles in various contexts. The treatment of the subject is non-mathematical, and the book considers some of the latest concepts in the systems discipline, such as agent based systems, optimization, and discrete events and procedures. The diverse range of examples provided in this book, will allow readers to: Apply system knowledge at work and in daily life without deep mathematical knowledge; Build models and simulate system behaviors on a personal computer; Opti...

  18. Set membership experimental design for biological systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marvel Skylar W

    2012-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Experimental design approaches for biological systems are needed to help conserve the limited resources that are allocated for performing experiments. The assumptions used when assigning probability density functions to characterize uncertainty in biological systems are unwarranted when only a small number of measurements can be obtained. In these situations, the uncertainty in biological systems is more appropriately characterized in a bounded-error context. Additionally, effort must be made to improve the connection between modelers and experimentalists by relating design metrics to biologically relevant information. Bounded-error experimental design approaches that can assess the impact of additional measurements on model uncertainty are needed to identify the most appropriate balance between the collection of data and the availability of resources. Results In this work we develop a bounded-error experimental design framework for nonlinear continuous-time systems when few data measurements are available. This approach leverages many of the recent advances in bounded-error parameter and state estimation methods that use interval analysis to generate parameter sets and state bounds consistent with uncertain data measurements. We devise a novel approach using set-based uncertainty propagation to estimate measurement ranges at candidate time points. We then use these estimated measurements at the candidate time points to evaluate which candidate measurements furthest reduce model uncertainty. A method for quickly combining multiple candidate time points is presented and allows for determining the effect of adding multiple measurements. Biologically relevant metrics are developed and used to predict when new data measurements should be acquired, which system components should be measured and how many additional measurements should be obtained. Conclusions The practicability of our approach is illustrated with a case study. This

  19. Harnessing systems biology approaches to engineer functional microvascular networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sefcik, Lauren S; Wilson, Jennifer L; Papin, Jason A; Botchwey, Edward A

    2010-06-01

    Microvascular remodeling is a complex process that includes many cell types and molecular signals. Despite a continued growth in the understanding of signaling pathways involved in the formation and maturation of new blood vessels, approximately half of all compounds entering clinical trials will fail, resulting in the loss of much time, money, and resources. Most pro-angiogenic clinical trials to date have focused on increasing neovascularization via the delivery of a single growth factor or gene. Alternatively, a focus on the concerted regulation of whole networks of genes may lead to greater insight into the underlying physiology since the coordinated response is greater than the sum of its parts. Systems biology offers a comprehensive network view of the processes of angiogenesis and arteriogenesis that might enable the prediction of drug targets and whether or not activation of the targets elicits the desired outcome. Systems biology integrates complex biological data from a variety of experimental sources (-omics) and analyzes how the interactions of the system components can give rise to the function and behavior of that system. This review focuses on how systems biology approaches have been applied to microvascular growth and remodeling, and how network analysis tools can be utilized to aid novel pro-angiogenic drug discovery.

  20. Nutritional systems biology of type 2 diabetes

    OpenAIRE

    Zhao, Y; Barrere-Cain, RE; Yang, X

    2015-01-01

    © 2015, The Author(s). Type 2 diabetes (T2D) has become an increasingly challenging health burden due to its high morbidity, mortality, and heightened prevalence worldwide. Although dietary and nutritional imbalances have long been recognized as key risk factors for T2D, the underlying mechanisms remain unclear. The advent of nutritional systems biology, a field that aims to elucidate the interactions between dietary nutrients and endogenous molecular entities in disease-related tissues, offe...

  1. Modelling and Inference Strategies for Biological Systems

    OpenAIRE

    Palmisano, Alida

    2010-01-01

    For many years, computers have played an important role in helping scientists to store, manipulate, and analyze data coming from many different disciplines. In recent years, however, new technological capabilities and new ways of thinking about the usefulness of computer science is extending the reach of computers from simple analysis of collected data to hypothesis generation. The aim of this work is to provide a contribution in the Computational Systems Biology field. The main purpose of...

  2. Systems biology solutions for biochemical production challenges

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Hansen, Anne Sofie Lærke; Lennen, Rebecca M; Sonnenschein, Nikolaus

    2017-01-01

    characterization, genome-scale metabolic modeling, and adaptive laboratory evolution can be readily deployed in metabolic engineering projects. However, high performance strains usually carry tens of genetic modifications and need to operate in challenging environmental conditions. This additional complexity......There is an urgent need to significantly accelerate the development of microbial cell factories to produce fuels and chemicals from renewable feedstocks in order to facilitate the transition to a biobased society. Methods commonly used within the field of systems biology including omics...

  3. Advances in Structural Biology and the Application to Biological Filament Systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Popp, David; Koh, Fujiet; Scipion, Clement P M; Ghoshdastider, Umesh; Narita, Akihiro; Holmes, Kenneth C; Robinson, Robert C

    2018-02-27

    Structural biology has experienced several transformative technological advances in recent years. These include: development of extremely bright X-ray sources (microfocus synchrotron beamlines and free electron lasers) and the use of electrons to extend protein crystallography to ever decreasing crystal sizes; and an increase in the resolution attainable by cryo-electron microscopy. Here we discuss the use of these techniques in general terms and highlight their application for biological filament systems, an area that is severely underrepresented in atomic resolution structures. We assemble a model of a capped tropomyosin-actin minifilament to demonstrate the utility of combining structures determined by different techniques. Finally, we survey the methods that attempt to transform high resolution structural biology into more physiological environments, such as the cell. Together these techniques promise a compelling decade for structural biology and, more importantly, they will provide exciting discoveries in understanding the designs and purposes of biological machines. © 2018 The Authors. BioEssays Published by WILEY Periodicals, Inc.

  4. Applying systems biology methods to the study of human physiology in extreme environments

    OpenAIRE

    Edwards, Lindsay M; Thiele, Ines

    2013-01-01

    Systems biology is defined in this review as ‘an iterative process of computational model building and experimental model revision with the aim of understanding or simulating complex biological systems’. We propose that, in practice, systems biology rests on three pillars: computation, the omics disciplines and repeated experimental perturbation of the system of interest. The number of ethical and physiologically relevant perturbations that can be used in experiments on healthy humans is e...

  5. The mammary gland in domestic ruminants: a systems biology perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ferreira, Ana M; Bislev, Stine L; Bendixen, Emøke; Almeida, André M

    2013-12-06

    Milk and dairy products are central elements in the human diet. It is estimated that 108kg of milk per year are consumed per person worldwide. Therefore, dairy production represents a relevant fraction of the economies of many countries, being cattle, sheep, goat, water buffalo, and other ruminants the main species used worldwide. An adequate management of dairy farming cannot be achieved without the knowledge on the biological mechanisms behind lactation in ruminants. Thus, understanding the morphology, development and regulation of the mammary gland in health, disease and production is crucial. Presently, innovative and high-throughput technologies such as genomics, transcriptomics, proteomics and metabolomics allow a much broader and detailed knowledge on such issues. Additionally, the application of a systems biology approach to animal science is vastly growing, as new advances in one field of specialization or animal species lead to new lines of research in other areas or/and are expanded to other species. This article addresses how modern research approaches may help us understand long-known issues in mammary development, lactation biology and dairy production. Dairy production depends upon the knowledge of the morphology and regulation of the mammary gland and lactation. High-throughput technologies allow a much broader and detailed knowledge on the biology of the mammary gland. This paper reviews the major contributions that genomics, transcriptomics, metabolomics and proteomics approaches have provided to understand the regulation of the mammary gland in health, disease and production. In the context of mammary gland "omics"-based research, the integration of results using a Systems Biology Approach is of key importance. © 2013.

  6. Life: An Introduction to Complex Systems Biology

    CERN Document Server

    Kaneko, Kunihiko

    2006-01-01

    What is life? Has molecular biology given us a satisfactory answer to this question? And if not, why, and how to carry on from there? This book examines life not from the reductionist point of view, but rather asks the question: what are the universal properties of living systems and how can one construct from there a phenomenological theory of life that leads naturally to complex processes such as reproductive cellular systems, evolution and differentiation? The presentation has been deliberately kept fairly non-technical so as to address a broad spectrum of students and researchers from the natural sciences and informatics.

  7. GPSR: A Resource for Genomics Proteomics and Systems Biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    GPSR: A Resource for Genomics Proteomics and Systems Biology · Simple Calculation Programs for Biology Immunological Methods · Simple Calculation Programs for Biology Methods in Molecular Biology · Simple Calculation Programs for Biology Other Methods · PowerPoint Presentation · Slide 6 · Slide 7 · Prediction of ...

  8. Engaging Systems Understanding through Games (Invited)

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pfirman, S. L.; Lee, J. J.; Eklund, K.; Turrin, M.; O'Garra, T.; Orlove, B. S.

    2013-12-01

    The Polar Learning And Responding (PoLAR) Climate Change Education Partnership (CCEP), supported by the National Science Foundation's CCEP Phase II program, uses novel educational approaches to engage adult learners and to inform public understanding about climate change. Both previous studies and our experience show that games and game-like activities lead people to explore systems and motivate problem-solving. This presentation focuses on three games developed by the PoLAR team: a multiplayer card game, a strategy board game, and a serious game, and discusses them within the larger framework of research and evaluation of learning outcomes. In the multiplayer card game EcoChains: Arctic Crisis, players learn how to build marine food chains, then strategize ways to make them resilient to a variety of natural and anthropogenic events. In the strategy board game Arctic SMARTIC (Strategic MAnagement of Resources in TImes of Change), participants take on roles, set developmental priorities, and then negotiate to resolve conflicts and deal with climate change scenarios. In the serious game FUTURE COAST, players explore "what if" scenarios in a collaborative narrative environment. Grounded on the award-winning WORLD WITHOUT OIL, which employed a similar story frame to impart energy concepts and realities, FUTURE COAST uses voicemails from the future to impel players through complexities of disrupted systems and realities of human interactions when facing change. Launching February 2014, FUTURE COAST is played online and in field events; players create media designed to be spreadable through their social networks. As players envision possible futures, they create diverse communities of practice that synthesize across human-environment interactions. Playtests highlight how the game evokes systems thinking, and engages and problem-solves via narrative: * 'While I was initially unsure how I'd contribute to a group I'd never met, the project itself proved so engaging that I

  9. Engineering biological systems toward a sustainable bioeconomy.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lopes, Mateus Schreiner Garcez

    2015-06-01

    The nature of our major global risks calls for sustainable innovations to decouple economic growth from greenhouse gases emission. The development of sustainable technologies has been negatively impacted by several factors including sugar production costs, production scale, economic crises, hydraulic fracking development and the market inability to capture externality costs. However, advances in engineering of biological systems allow bridging the gap between exponential growth of knowledge about biology and the creation of sustainable value chains for a broad range of economic sectors. Additionally, industrial symbiosis of different biobased technologies can increase competitiveness and sustainability, leading to the development of eco-industrial parks. Reliable policies for carbon pricing and revenue reinvestments in disruptive technologies and in the deployment of eco-industrial parks could boost the welfare while addressing our major global risks toward the transition from a fossil to a biobased economy.

  10. Biological Therapy in Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mariana Postal

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE is a prototypic inflammatory autoimmune disorder characterized by multisystem involvement and fluctuating disease activity. Symptoms range from rather mild manifestations such as rash or arthritis to life-threatening end-organ manifestations. Despite new and improved therapy having positively impacted the prognosis of SLE, a subgroup of patients do not respond to conventional therapy. Moreover, the risk of fatal outcomes and the damaging side effects of immunosuppressive therapies in SLE call for an improvement in the current therapeutic management. New therapeutic approaches are focused on B-cell targets, T-cell downregulation and costimulatory blockade, cytokine inhibition, and the modulation of complement. Several biological agents have been developed, but this encouraging news is associated with several disappointments in trials and provide a timely moment to reflect on biologic therapy in SLE.

  11. Systems biology of lactic acid bacteria: a critical review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Teusink, Bas; Bachmann, Herwig; Molenaar, Douwe

    2011-08-30

    Understanding the properties of a system as emerging from the interaction of well described parts is the most important goal of Systems Biology. Although in the practice of Lactic Acid Bacteria (LAB) physiology we most often think of the parts as the proteins and metabolites, a wider interpretation of what a part is can be useful. For example, different strains or species can be the parts of a community, or we could study only the chemical reactions as the parts of metabolism (and forgetting about the enzymes that catalyze them), as is done in flux balance analysis. As long as we have some understanding of the properties of these parts, we can investigate whether their interaction leads to novel or unanticipated behaviour of the system that they constitute. There has been a tendency in the Systems Biology community to think that the collection and integration of data should continue ad infinitum, or that we will otherwise not be able to understand the systems that we study in their details. However, it may sometimes be useful to take a step back and consider whether the knowledge that we already have may not explain the system behaviour that we find so intriguing. Reasoning about systems can be difficult, and may require the application of mathematical techniques. The reward is sometimes the realization of unexpected conclusions, or in the worst case, that we still do not know enough details of the parts, or of the interactions between them. We will discuss a number of cases, with a focus on LAB-related work, where a typical systems approach has brought new knowledge or perspective, often counterintuitive, and clashing with conclusions from simpler approaches. Also novel types of testable hypotheses may be generated by the systems approach, which we will illustrate. Finally we will give an outlook on the fields of research where the systems approach may point the way for the near future.

  12. Adaptable data management for systems biology investigations

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Burdick David

    2009-03-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Within research each experiment is different, the focus changes and the data is generated from a continually evolving barrage of technologies. There is a continual introduction of new techniques whose usage ranges from in-house protocols through to high-throughput instrumentation. To support these requirements data management systems are needed that can be rapidly built and readily adapted for new usage. Results The adaptable data management system discussed is designed to support the seamless mining and analysis of biological experiment data that is commonly used in systems biology (e.g. ChIP-chip, gene expression, proteomics, imaging, flow cytometry. We use different content graphs to represent different views upon the data. These views are designed for different roles: equipment specific views are used to gather instrumentation information; data processing oriented views are provided to enable the rapid development of analysis applications; and research project specific views are used to organize information for individual research experiments. This management system allows for both the rapid introduction of new types of information and the evolution of the knowledge it represents. Conclusion Data management is an important aspect of any research enterprise. It is the foundation on which most applications are built, and must be easily extended to serve new functionality for new scientific areas. We have found that adopting a three-tier architecture for data management, built around distributed standardized content repositories, allows us to rapidly develop new applications to support a diverse user community.

  13. Adaptable data management for systems biology investigations

    Science.gov (United States)

    Boyle, John; Rovira, Hector; Cavnor, Chris; Burdick, David; Killcoyne, Sarah; Shmulevich, Ilya

    2009-01-01

    Background Within research each experiment is different, the focus changes and the data is generated from a continually evolving barrage of technologies. There is a continual introduction of new techniques whose usage ranges from in-house protocols through to high-throughput instrumentation. To support these requirements data management systems are needed that can be rapidly built and readily adapted for new usage. Results The adaptable data management system discussed is designed to support the seamless mining and analysis of biological experiment data that is commonly used in systems biology (e.g. ChIP-chip, gene expression, proteomics, imaging, flow cytometry). We use different content graphs to represent different views upon the data. These views are designed for different roles: equipment specific views are used to gather instrumentation information; data processing oriented views are provided to enable the rapid development of analysis applications; and research project specific views are used to organize information for individual research experiments. This management system allows for both the rapid introduction of new types of information and the evolution of the knowledge it represents. Conclusion Data management is an important aspect of any research enterprise. It is the foundation on which most applications are built, and must be easily extended to serve new functionality for new scientific areas. We have found that adopting a three-tier architecture for data management, built around distributed standardized content repositories, allows us to rapidly develop new applications to support a diverse user community. PMID:19265554

  14. It's the System, Stupid: How Systems Biology Is Transforming.

    Science.gov (United States)

    2010-01-01

    So far, little is known about systems biology and its potential for changing how we diagnose and treat disease. That will change soon, say the systems experts, who advise payers to begin learning now about how it could make healthcare efficient.

  15. Theory of hybrid dynamical systems and its applications to biological and medical systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aihara, Kazuyuki; Suzuki, Hideyuki

    2010-11-13

    In this introductory article, we survey the contents of this Theme Issue. This Theme Issue deals with a fertile region of hybrid dynamical systems that are characterized by the coexistence of continuous and discrete dynamics. It is now well known that there exist many hybrid dynamical systems with discontinuities such as impact, switching, friction and sliding. The first aim of this Issue is to discuss recent developments in understanding nonlinear dynamics of hybrid dynamical systems in the two main theoretical fields of dynamical systems theory and control systems theory. A combined study of the hybrid systems dynamics in the two theoretical fields might contribute to a more comprehensive understanding of hybrid dynamical systems. In addition, mathematical modelling by hybrid dynamical systems is particularly important for understanding the nonlinear dynamics of biological and medical systems as they have many discontinuities such as threshold-triggered firing in neurons, on-off switching of gene expression by a transcription factor, division in cells and certain types of chronotherapy for prostate cancer. Hence, the second aim is to discuss recent applications of hybrid dynamical systems in biology and medicine. Thus, this Issue is not only general to serve as a survey of recent progress in hybrid systems theory but also specific to introduce interesting and stimulating applications of hybrid systems in biology and medicine. As the introduction to the topics in this Theme Issue, we provide a brief history of nonlinear dynamics and mathematical modelling, different mathematical models of hybrid dynamical systems, the relationship between dynamical systems theory and control systems theory, examples of complex behaviour in a simple neuron model and its variants, applications of hybrid dynamical systems in biology and medicine as a road map of articles in this Theme Issue and future directions of hybrid systems modelling.

  16. Understanding schizophrenia as a disorder of consciousness: biological correlates and translational implications from quantum theory perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venkatasubramanian, Ganesan

    2015-04-30

    From neurophenomenological perspectives, schizophrenia has been conceptualized as "a disorder with heterogeneous manifestations that can be integrally understood to involve fundamental perturbations in consciousness". While these theoretical constructs based on consciousness facilitate understanding the 'gestalt' of schizophrenia, systematic research to unravel translational implications of these models is warranted. To address this, one needs to begin with exploration of plausible biological underpinnings of "perturbed consciousness" in schizophrenia. In this context, an attractive proposition to understand the biology of consciousness is "the orchestrated object reduction (Orch-OR) theory" which invokes quantum processes in the microtubules of neurons. The Orch-OR model is particularly important for understanding schizophrenia especially due to the shared 'scaffold' of microtubules. The initial sections of this review focus on the compelling evidence to support the view that "schizophrenia is a disorder of consciousness" through critical summary of the studies that have demonstrated self-abnormalities, aberrant time perception as well as dysfunctional intentional binding in this disorder. Subsequently, these findings are linked with 'Orch-OR theory' through the research evidence for aberrant neural oscillations as well as microtubule abnormalities observed in schizophrenia. Further sections emphasize the applicability and translational implications of Orch-OR theory in the context of schizophrenia and elucidate the relevance of quantum biology to understand the origins of this puzzling disorder as "fundamental disturbances in consciousness".

  17. Understanding and Enhancing Soil Biological Health: The Solution for Reversing Soil Degradation

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    R. Michael Lehman

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Our objective is to provide an optimistic strategy for reversing soil degradation by increasing public and private research efforts to understand the role of soil biology, particularly microbiology, on the health of our world’s soils. We begin by defining soil quality/soil health (which we consider to be interchangeable terms, characterizing healthy soil resources, and relating the significance of soil health to agroecosystems and their functions. We examine how soil biology influences soil health and how biological properties and processes contribute to sustainability of agriculture and ecosystem services. We continue by examining what can be done to manipulate soil biology to: (i increase nutrient availability for production of high yielding, high quality crops; (ii protect crops from pests, pathogens, weeds; and (iii manage other factors limiting production, provision of ecosystem services, and resilience to stresses like droughts. Next we look to the future by asking what needs to be known about soil biology that is not currently recognized or fully understood and how these needs could be addressed using emerging research tools. We conclude, based on our perceptions of how new knowledge regarding soil biology will help make agriculture more sustainable and productive, by recommending research emphases that should receive first priority through enhanced public and private research in order to reverse the trajectory toward global soil degradation.

  18. Understanding cities as social-ecological systems

    CSIR Research Space (South Africa)

    Du Plessis, C

    2008-09-01

    Full Text Available This paper builds on earlier ecological approaches to urban development, as well as more recent thinking in the fields of sustainability science, resilience thinking and complexity theory, to propose a conceptual framework for understanding cities...

  19. Systems Biology-Driven Hypotheses Tested In Vivo: The Need to Advancing Molecular Imaging Tools.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Verma, Garima; Palombo, Alessandro; Grigioni, Mauro; La Monaca, Morena; D'Avenio, Giuseppe

    2018-01-01

    Processing and interpretation of biological images may provide invaluable insights on complex, living systems because images capture the overall dynamics as a "whole." Therefore, "extraction" of key, quantitative morphological parameters could be, at least in principle, helpful in building a reliable systems biology approach in understanding living objects. Molecular imaging tools for system biology models have attained widespread usage in modern experimental laboratories. Here, we provide an overview on advances in the computational technology and different instrumentations focused on molecular image processing and analysis. Quantitative data analysis through various open source software and algorithmic protocols will provide a novel approach for modeling the experimental research program. Besides this, we also highlight the predictable future trends regarding methods for automatically analyzing biological data. Such tools will be very useful to understand the detailed biological and mathematical expressions under in-silico system biology processes with modeling properties.

  20. Systems Biology: Impressions from a Newcomer Graduate Student in 2016

    Science.gov (United States)

    Simpson, Melanie Rae

    2016-01-01

    As a newcomer, the philosophical basis of systems biology seems intuitive and appealing, the underlying philosophy being that the whole of a living system cannot be completely understood by the study of its individual parts. Yet answers to the questions "What is systems biology?" and "What constitutes a systems biology approach in…

  1. Inverse Problems in Systems Biology: A Critical Review.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guzzi, Rodolfo; Colombo, Teresa; Paci, Paola

    2018-01-01

    Systems Biology may be assimilated to a symbiotic cyclic interplaying between the forward and inverse problems. Computational models need to be continuously refined through experiments and in turn they help us to make limited experimental resources more efficient. Every time one does an experiment we know that there will be some noise that can disrupt our measurements. Despite the noise certainly is a problem, the inverse problems already involve the inference of missing information, even if the data is entirely reliable. So the addition of a certain limited noise does not fundamentally change the situation but can be used to solve the so-called ill-posed problem, as defined by Hadamard. It can be seen as an extra source of information. Recent studies have shown that complex systems, among others the systems biology, are poorly constrained and ill-conditioned because it is difficult to use experimental data to fully estimate their parameters. For these reasons was born the concept of sloppy models, a sequence of models of increasing complexity that become sloppy in the limit of microscopic accuracy. Furthermore the concept of sloppy models contains also the concept of un-identifiability, because the models are characterized by many parameters that are poorly constrained by experimental data. Then a strategy needs to be designed to infer, analyze, and understand biological systems. The aim of this work is to provide a critical review to the inverse problems in systems biology defining a strategy to determine the minimal set of information needed to overcome the problems arising from dynamic biological models that generally may have many unknown, non-measurable parameters.

  2. Biological diversity in the patent system.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Paul Oldham

    Full Text Available Biological diversity in the patent system is an enduring focus of controversy but empirical analysis of the presence of biodiversity in the patent system has been limited. To address this problem we text mined 11 million patent documents for 6 million Latin species names from the Global Names Index (GNI established by the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF and Encyclopedia of Life (EOL. We identified 76,274 full Latin species names from 23,882 genera in 767,955 patent documents. 25,595 species appeared in the claims section of 136,880 patent documents. This reveals that human innovative activity involving biodiversity in the patent system focuses on approximately 4% of taxonomically described species and between 0.8-1% of predicted global species. In this article we identify the major features of the patent landscape for biological diversity by focusing on key areas including pharmaceuticals, neglected diseases, traditional medicines, genetic engineering, foods, biocides, marine genetic resources and Antarctica. We conclude that the narrow focus of human innovative activity and ownership of genetic resources is unlikely to be in the long term interest of humanity. We argue that a broader spectrum of biodiversity needs to be opened up to research and development based on the principles of equitable benefit-sharing, respect for the objectives of the Convention on Biological Diversity, human rights and ethics. Finally, we argue that alternative models of innovation, such as open source and commons models, are required to open up biodiversity for research that addresses actual and neglected areas of human need. The research aims to inform the implementation of the 2010 Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization and international debates directed to the governance of genetic resources. Our research also aims to inform debates under the Intergovernmental Committee on

  3. Biological Diversity in the Patent System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oldham, Paul; Hall, Stephen; Forero, Oscar

    2013-01-01

    Biological diversity in the patent system is an enduring focus of controversy but empirical analysis of the presence of biodiversity in the patent system has been limited. To address this problem we text mined 11 million patent documents for 6 million Latin species names from the Global Names Index (GNI) established by the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) and Encyclopedia of Life (EOL). We identified 76,274 full Latin species names from 23,882 genera in 767,955 patent documents. 25,595 species appeared in the claims section of 136,880 patent documents. This reveals that human innovative activity involving biodiversity in the patent system focuses on approximately 4% of taxonomically described species and between 0.8–1% of predicted global species. In this article we identify the major features of the patent landscape for biological diversity by focusing on key areas including pharmaceuticals, neglected diseases, traditional medicines, genetic engineering, foods, biocides, marine genetic resources and Antarctica. We conclude that the narrow focus of human innovative activity and ownership of genetic resources is unlikely to be in the long term interest of humanity. We argue that a broader spectrum of biodiversity needs to be opened up to research and development based on the principles of equitable benefit-sharing, respect for the objectives of the Convention on Biological Diversity, human rights and ethics. Finally, we argue that alternative models of innovation, such as open source and commons models, are required to open up biodiversity for research that addresses actual and neglected areas of human need. The research aims to inform the implementation of the 2010 Nagoya Protocol on Access to Genetic Resources and the Equitable Sharing of Benefits Arising from their Utilization and international debates directed to the governance of genetic resources. Our research also aims to inform debates under the Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual

  4. Using chemistry and microfluidics to understand the spatial dynamics of complex biological networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kastrup, Christian J; Runyon, Matthew K; Lucchetta, Elena M; Price, Jessica M; Ismagilov, Rustem F

    2008-04-01

    Understanding the spatial dynamics of biochemical networks is both fundamentally important for understanding life at the systems level and also has practical implications for medicine, engineering, biology, and chemistry. Studies at the level of individual reactions provide essential information about the function, interactions, and localization of individual molecular species and reactions in a network. However, analyzing the spatial dynamics of complex biochemical networks at this level is difficult. Biochemical networks are nonequilibrium systems containing dozens to hundreds of reactions with nonlinear and time-dependent interactions, and these interactions are influenced by diffusion, flow, and the relative values of state-dependent kinetic parameters. To achieve an overall understanding of the spatial dynamics of a network and the global mechanisms that drive its function, networks must be analyzed as a whole, where all of the components and influential parameters of a network are simultaneously considered. Here, we describe chemical concepts and microfluidic tools developed for network-level investigations of the spatial dynamics of these networks. Modular approaches can be used to simplify these networks by separating them into modules, and simple experimental or computational models can be created by replacing each module with a single reaction. Microfluidics can be used to implement these models as well as to analyze and perturb the complex network itself with spatial control on the micrometer scale. We also describe the application of these network-level approaches to elucidate the mechanisms governing the spatial dynamics of two networkshemostasis (blood clotting) and early patterning of the Drosophila embryo. To investigate the dynamics of the complex network of hemostasis, we simplified the network by using a modular mechanism and created a chemical model based on this mechanism by using microfluidics. Then, we used the mechanism and the model to

  5. Collaborative Systems Biology Projects for the Military Medical Community.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zalatoris, Jeffrey J; Scheerer, Julia B; Lebeda, Frank J

    2017-09-01

    This pilot study was conducted to examine, for the first time, the ongoing systems biology research and development projects within the laboratories and centers of the U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command (USAMRMC). The analysis has provided an understanding of the breadth of systems biology activities, resources, and collaborations across all USAMRMC subordinate laboratories. The Systems Biology Collaboration Center at USAMRMC issued a survey regarding systems biology research projects to the eight U.S.-based USAMRMC laboratories and centers in August 2016. This survey included a data call worksheet to gather self-identified project and programmatic information. The general topics focused on the investigators and their projects, on the project's research areas, on omics and other large data types being collected and stored, on the analytical or computational tools being used, and on identifying intramural (i.e., USAMRMC) and extramural collaborations. Among seven of the eight laboratories, 62 unique systems biology studies were funded and active during the final quarter of fiscal year 2016. Of 29 preselected medical Research Task Areas, 20 were associated with these studies, some of which were applicable to two or more Research Task Areas. Overall, studies were categorized among six general types of objectives: biological mechanisms of disease, risk of/susceptibility to injury or disease, innate mechanisms of healing, diagnostic and prognostic biomarkers, and host/patient responses to vaccines, and therapeutic strategies including host responses to therapies. We identified eight types of omics studies and four types of study subjects. Studies were categorized on a scale of increasing complexity from single study subject/single omics technology studies (23/62) to studies integrating results across two study subject types and two or more omics technologies (13/62). Investigators at seven USAMRMC laboratories had collaborations with systems biology experts

  6. System for determining sizes of biological macromolecules

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Nelson, R.M.; Danby, P.C.

    1987-01-01

    An electrophoresis system for determining the sizes of radiolabelled biological macromolecules is described. It comprises a cell containing an electrophoresis gel and having at least one lane, a voltage source connected across the gel for effecting the movement of macromolecules in the lane, a detector fixed relative to the moving molecules for generating electrical pulses responsive to signals emitted by the radiolabelled molecules; a pulse processor for counting the pulse rate, and a computational device for comparing the pulse rate to a predetermined value. (author)

  7. Integrative Systems Biology Applied to Toxicology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kongsbak, Kristine Grønning

    associated with combined exposure to multiple chemicals. Testing all possible combinations of the tens of thousands environmental chemicals is impractical. This PhD project was launched to apply existing computational systems biology methods to toxicological research. In this thesis, I present in three...... projects three different approaches to using computational toxicology to aid classical toxicological investigations. In project I, we predicted human health effects of five pesticides using publicly available data. We obtained a grouping of the chemical according to their potential human health effects...

  8. Glycoengineering in CHO Cells: Advances in Systems Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tejwani, Vijay; Andersen, Mikael R; Nam, Jong Hyun; Sharfstein, Susan T

    2018-03-01

    For several decades, glycoprotein biologics have been successfully produced from Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells. The therapeutic efficacy and potency of glycoprotein biologics are often dictated by their post-translational modifications, particularly glycosylation, which unlike protein synthesis, is a non-templated process. Consequently, both native and recombinant glycoprotein production generate heterogeneous mixtures containing variable amounts of different glycoforms. Stability, potency, plasma half-life, and immunogenicity of the glycoprotein biologic are directly influenced by the glycoforms. Recently, CHO cells have also been explored for production of therapeutic glycosaminoglycans (e.g., heparin), which presents similar challenges as producing glycoproteins biologics. Approaches to controlling heterogeneity in CHO cells and directing the biosynthetic process toward desired glycoforms are not well understood. A systems biology approach combining different technologies is needed for complete understanding of the molecular processes accounting for this variability and to open up new venues in cell line development. In this review, we describe several advances in genetic manipulation, modeling, and glycan and glycoprotein analysis that together will provide new strategies for glycoengineering of CHO cells with desired or enhanced glycosylation capabilities. © 2018 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.

  9. The role of mechanics in biological and bio-inspired systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Egan, Paul; Sinko, Robert; LeDuc, Philip R; Keten, Sinan

    2015-07-06

    Natural systems frequently exploit intricate multiscale and multiphasic structures to achieve functionalities beyond those of man-made systems. Although understanding the chemical make-up of these systems is essential, the passive and active mechanics within biological systems are crucial when considering the many natural systems that achieve advanced properties, such as high strength-to-weight ratios and stimuli-responsive adaptability. Discovering how and why biological systems attain these desirable mechanical functionalities often reveals principles that inform new synthetic designs based on biological systems. Such approaches have traditionally found success in medical applications, and are now informing breakthroughs in diverse frontiers of science and engineering.

  10. Understanding recognition and self-assembly in biology using the chemist's toolbox. Insight into medicinal chemistry.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Quirolo, Z B; Benedini, L A; Sequeira, M A; Herrera, M G; Veuthey, T V; Dodero, V I

    2014-01-01

    Medicinal chemistry is intimately connected with basic science such as organic synthesis, chemical biology and biophysical chemistry among other disciplines. The reason of such connections is due to the power of organic synthesis to provide designed molecules; chemical biology to give tools to discover biological and/or pathological pathways and biophysical chemistry which provides the techniques to characterize and the theoretical background to understand molecular behaviour. The present review provides some selective examples of these research areas. Initially, template dsDNA organic synthesis and the spatio-temporal control of transcription are presenting following by the supramolecular entities used in drug delivery, such as liposomes and liquid crystal among others. Finally, peptides and protein self-assembly is connected with biomaterials and as an important event in the balance between health and disease. The final aim of the present review is to show the power of chemical tools not only for the synthesis of new molecules but also to improve our understanding of recognition and self-assembly in the biological context.

  11. Redefining plant systems biology: from cell to ecosystem

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Keurentjes, J.J.B.; Angenent, G.C.; Dicke, M.; Martins Dos Santos, V.A.P.; Molenaar, J.; Van der Putten, W.H.; de Ruiter, P.C.; Struik, P.C.; Thomma, B.P.H.J.

    2011-01-01

    Molecular biologists typically restrict systems biology to cellular levels. By contrast, ecologists define biological systems as communities of interacting individuals at different trophic levels that process energy, nutrient and information flows. Modern plant breeding needs to increase

  12. AN INTEGRATED BIOLOGICAL CONTROL SYSTEM AT HANFORD

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    JOHNSON AR; CAUDILL JG; GIDDINGS RF; RODRIGUEZ JM; ROOS RC; WILDE JW

    2010-02-11

    In 1999 an integrated biological control system was instituted at the U.S. Department of Energy's Hanford Site. Successes and changes to the program needed to be communicated to a large and diverse mix of organizations and individuals. Efforts at communication are directed toward the following: Hanford Contractors (Liquid or Tank Waste, Solid Waste, Environmental Restoration, Science and Technology, Site Infrastructure), General Hanford Employees, and Hanford Advisory Board (Native American Tribes, Environmental Groups, Local Citizens, Washington State and Oregon State regulatory agencies). Communication was done through direct interface meetings, individual communication, where appropriate, and broadly sharing program reports. The objectives of the communication efforts was to have the program well coordinated with Hanford contractors, and to have the program understood well enough that all stakeholders would have confidence in the work performed by the program to reduce or elimated spread of radioactive contamination by biotic vectors. Communication of successes and changes to an integrated biological control system instituted in 1999 at the Department of Energy's Hanford Site have required regular interfaces with not only a diverse group of Hanford contractors (i.e., those responsible for liquid or tank waste, solid wastes, environmental restoration, science and technology, and site infrastructure), and general Hanford employees, but also with a consortium of designated stake holders organized as the Hanford Advisory Board (i.e., Native American tribes, various environmental groups, local citizens, Washington state and Oregon regulatory agencies, etc.). Direct interface meetings, individual communication where appropriate, and transparency of the biological control program were the methods and outcome of this effort.

  13. An Integrated Biological Control System At Hanford

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Johnson, A.R.; Caudill, J.G.; Giddings, R.F.; Rodriguez, J.M.; Roos, R.C.; Wilde, J.W.

    2010-01-01

    In 1999 an integrated biological control system was instituted at the U.S. Department of Energy's Hanford Site. Successes and changes to the program needed to be communicated to a large and diverse mix of organizations and individuals. Efforts at communication are directed toward the following: Hanford Contractors (Liquid or Tank Waste, Solid Waste, Environmental Restoration, Science and Technology, Site Infrastructure), General Hanford Employees, and Hanford Advisory Board (Native American Tribes, Environmental Groups, Local Citizens, Washington State and Oregon State regulatory agencies). Communication was done through direct interface meetings, individual communication, where appropriate, and broadly sharing program reports. The objectives of the communication efforts was to have the program well coordinated with Hanford contractors, and to have the program understood well enough that all stakeholders would have confidence in the work performed by the program to reduce or elimate spread of radioactive contamination by biotic vectors. Communication of successes and changes to an integrated biological control system instituted in 1999 at the Department of Energy's Hanford Site have required regular interfaces with not only a diverse group of Hanford contractors (i.e., those responsible for liquid or tank waste, solid wastes, environmental restoration, science and technology, and site infrastructure), and general Hanford employees, but also with a consortium of designated stake holders organized as the Hanford Advisory Board (i.e., Native American tribes, various environmental groups, local citizens, Washington state and Oregon regulatory agencies, etc.). Direct interface meetings, individual communication where appropriate, and transparency of the biological control program were the methods and outcome of this effort.

  14. Quantum mechanical simulation methods for studying biological systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Bicout, D.; Field, M.

    1996-01-01

    Most known biological mechanisms can be explained using fundamental laws of physics and chemistry and a full understanding of biological processes requires a multidisciplinary approach in which all the tools of biology, chemistry and physics are employed. An area of research becoming increasingly important is the theoretical study of biological macromolecules where numerical experimentation plays a double role of establishing a link between theoretical models and predictions and allowing a quantitative comparison between experiments and models. This workshop brought researchers working on different aspects of the development and application of quantum mechanical simulation together, assessed the state-of-the-art in the field and highlighted directions for future research. Fourteen lectures (theoretical courses and specialized seminars) deal with following themes: 1) quantum mechanical calculations of large systems, 2) ab initio molecular dynamics where the calculation of the wavefunction and hence the energy and forces on the atoms for a system at a single nuclear configuration are combined with classical molecular dynamics algorithms in order to perform simulations which use a quantum mechanical potential energy surface, 3) quantum dynamical simulations, electron and proton transfer processes in proteins and in solutions and finally, 4) free seminars that helped to enlarge the scope of the workshop. (N.T.)

  15. Stochastic transport processes in discrete biological systems

    CERN Document Server

    Frehland, Eckart

    1982-01-01

    These notes are in part based on a course for advanced students in the applications of stochastic processes held in 1978 at the University of Konstanz. These notes contain the results of re­ cent studies on the stochastic description of ion transport through biological membranes. In particular, they serve as an introduction to an unified theory of fluctuations in complex biological transport systems. We emphasize that the subject of this volume is not to introduce the mathematics of stochastic processes but to present a field of theoretical biophysics in which stochastic methods are important. In the last years the study of membrane noise has become an important method in biophysics. Valuable information on the ion transport mechanisms in membranes can be obtained from noise analysis. A number of different processes such as the opening and closing of ion channels have been shown to be sources of the measured current or voltage fluctuations. Bio­ logical 'transport systems can be complex. For example, the tr...

  16. Understanding COBOL systems using inferred types

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    A. van Deursen (Arie); L.M.F. Moonen (Leon)

    1999-01-01

    textabstractIn a typical COBOL program, the data division consists of 50 of the lines of code. Automatic type inference can help to understand the large collections of variable declarations contained therein, showing how variables are related based on their actual usage. The most problematic aspect

  17. Biological Systems for Hydrogen Photoproduction (Presentation)

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Ghirardi, M. L.

    2012-05-01

    This presentation summarizes NREL biological systems for hydrogen photoproduction work for the DOE Hydrogen and Fuel Cells Program Annual Merit Review and Peer Evaluation Meeting, May 14-18, 2012. General goal is develop photobiological systems for large-scale, low cost and efficient H{sub 2} production from water (barriers AH, AI and AJ). Specific tasks are: (1) Address the O{sub 2} sensitivity of hydrogenases that prevent continuity of H{sub 2} photoproduction under aerobic, high solar-to-hydrogen (STH) light conversion efficiency conditions; and (2) Utilize a limited STH H{sub 2}-producing method (sulfur deprivation) as a platform to address or test other factors limiting commercial algal H{sub 2} photoproduction, including low rates due to biochemical and engineering mechanisms.

  18. Language Based Techniques for Systems Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pilegaard, Henrik

    Process calculus is the common denominator for a class of compact, idealised, domain-specific formalisms normally associated with the study of reactive concurrent systems within Computer Science. With the rise of the interactioncentred science of Systems Biology a number of bio-inspired process......), is context insensitive, while the other, a poly-variant analysis (2CFA), is context-sensitive. These analyses compute safe approximations to the set of spatial configurations that are reachable according to a given model. This is useful in the qualitative study of cellular self-organisation and, e.......g., the effects of receptor defects or drug delivery mechanisms. The property of sequential realisability. which is closely related to the function of biochemical pathways, is addressed by a variant of traditional Data Flow Analysis (DFA). This so-called ‘Pathway Analysis’ computes safe approximations to the set...

  19. Spatial Structures and Regulation in Biological Systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Yde, Pernille

    , and the other is the spatial regulation of biological systems, here related to different aspects of the inflammatory response. All systems are studied using computational modelling and mathematical analysis. The first part of the thesis explores different protein aggregation scenarios. In Chapter 1, we consider...... a previously studied and very general aggregation model describing frangible linear filaments. This model is especially relevant for the growth of amyloid fibres, that have been related to a number of serious human diseases, and which are known to grow in an accelerated self-enhanced manner.We derive...... model of the tissue and show how coupled cells are able to function as an excitable medium and propagate waves of high cytokine concentration through the tissue. If the internal regulation in the cells is over-productive, the model predicts a continuous amplification of cytokines, which spans the entire...

  20. Microbial stress tolerance for biofuels. Systems biology

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Liu, Zonglin Lewis (ed.) [National Center for Agricultural Utilization Research, USDA-ARS, Peoria, IL (United States)

    2012-07-01

    The development of sustainable and renewable biofuels is attracting growing interest. It is vital to develop robust microbial strains for biocatalysts that are able to function under multiple stress conditions. This Microbiology Monograph provides an overview of methods for studying microbial stress tolerance for biofuels applications using a systems biology approach. Topics covered range from mechanisms to methodology for yeast and bacteria, including the genomics of yeast tolerance and detoxification; genetics and regulation of glycogen and trehalose metabolism; programmed cell death; high gravity fermentations; ethanol tolerance; improving biomass sugar utilization by engineered Saccharomyces; the genomics on tolerance of Zymomonas mobilis; microbial solvent tolerance; control of stress tolerance in bacterial host organisms; metabolomics for ethanologenic yeast; automated proteomics work cell systems for strain improvement; and unification of gene expression data for comparable analyses under stress conditions. (orig.)

  1. Understanding aging in containment cooling systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Lofaro, R.J.

    1993-01-01

    A study has been performed to assess the effects of aging in nuclear power plant containment cooling systems. Failure records from national databases, as well as plant specific data were reviewed and analyzed to identify aging characteristics for this system. The predominant aging mechanisms were determined, along with the most frequently failed components and their associated failure modes. This paper discusses the aging mechanisms present in the containment spray system and the containment fan cooler system, which are two systems used to provide the containment cooling function. The failure modes, along with the relative frequency of each is also discussed

  2. Network Analyses in Systems Biology: New Strategies for Dealing with Biological Complexity

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Green, Sara; Serban, Maria; Scholl, Raphael

    2018-01-01

    The increasing application of network models to interpret biological systems raises a number of important methodological and epistemological questions. What novel insights can network analysis provide in biology? Are network approaches an extension of or in conflict with mechanistic research...

  3. Introducing Systems Biology to Bioscience students through mathematical modelling. A practical module

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Néstor V. Torres Darias

    2013-11-01

    Full Text Available Systems Biology, one of the current approaches to the understanding of living things, aims to understand the behaviour of living systems through the creation of mathematical models that integrate the available knowledge of the system’s component parts and the relations among them. Accordingly, model building should play a central part in any biology degree program. One difficulty that we face when confronted with this task, however, is that the mathematical background of undergraduate students is very often deficient in essential concepts required for dynamic mathematical modelling. In this practical module, students are introduced to the basic techniques of mathematical modelling and computer simulation from a Systems Biology perspective.

  4. Molecular profiles to biology and pathways: a systems biology approach.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Van Laere, Steven; Dirix, Luc; Vermeulen, Peter

    2016-06-16

    Interpreting molecular profiles in a biological context requires specialized analysis strategies. Initially, lists of relevant genes were screened to identify enriched concepts associated with pathways or specific molecular processes. However, the shortcoming of interpreting gene lists by using predefined sets of genes has resulted in the development of novel methods that heavily rely on network-based concepts. These algorithms have the advantage that they allow a more holistic view of the signaling properties of the condition under study as well as that they are suitable for integrating different data types like gene expression, gene mutation, and even histological parameters.

  5. Modeling drug- and chemical- induced hepatotoxicity with systems biology approaches

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Sudin eBhattacharya

    2012-12-01

    Full Text Available We provide an overview of computational systems biology approaches as applied to the study of chemical- and drug-induced toxicity. The concept of ‘toxicity pathways’ is described in the context of the 2007 US National Academies of Science report, Toxicity testing in the 21st Century: A Vision and A Strategy. Pathway mapping and modeling based on network biology concepts are a key component of the vision laid out in this report for a more biologically-based analysis of dose-response behavior and the safety of chemicals and drugs. We focus on toxicity of the liver (hepatotoxicity – a complex phenotypic response with contributions from a number of different cell types and biological processes. We describe three case studies of complementary multi-scale computational modeling approaches to understand perturbation of toxicity pathways in the human liver as a result of exposure to environmental contaminants and specific drugs. One approach involves development of a spatial, multicellular virtual tissue model of the liver lobule that combines molecular circuits in individual hepatocytes with cell-cell interactions and blood-mediated transport of toxicants through hepatic sinusoids, to enable quantitative, mechanistic prediction of hepatic dose-response for activation of the AhR toxicity pathway. Simultaneously, methods are being developing to extract quantitative maps of intracellular signaling and transcriptional regulatory networks perturbed by environmental contaminants, using a combination of gene expression and genome-wide protein-DNA interaction data. A predictive physiological model (DILIsymTM to understand drug-induced liver injury (DILI, the most common adverse event leading to termination of clinical development programs and regulatory actions on drugs, is also described. The model initially focuses on reactive metabolite-induced DILI in response to administration of acetaminophen, and spans multiple biological scales.

  6. Electromagnetic field interaction with biological systems and microwave hyperthermia

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Behari, J.; Srivastava, G.P.

    1997-01-01

    The interaction of microwaves with biological system is best understood in terms of heating of the tissues. This in turn lead to changes in chemical reaction rates and current flows, the understanding of which demands a basic knowledge of mechanisms of microwave-biointeraction. A practical advantage of this lies in using this method for selective heating of tissues as in the case of cancer. Modality of heating by using interstitial implants and interstitial antennas is discussed. Design of antennas for specific heating profile is also presented. (author)

  7. 3S - Systematic, systemic, and systems biology and toxicology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Smirnova, Lena; Kleinstreuer, Nicole; Corvi, Raffaella; Levchenko, Andre; Fitzpatrick, Suzanne C; Hartung, Thomas

    2018-01-01

    A biological system is more than the sum of its parts - it accomplishes many functions via synergy. Deconstructing the system down to the molecular mechanism level necessitates the complement of reconstructing functions on all levels, i.e., in our conceptualization of biology and its perturbations, our experimental models and computer modelling. Toxicology contains the somewhat arbitrary subclass "systemic toxicities"; however, there is no relevant toxic insult or general disease that is not systemic. At least inflammation and repair are involved that require coordinated signaling mechanisms across the organism. However, the more body components involved, the greater the challenge to reca-pitulate such toxicities using non-animal models. Here, the shortcomings of current systemic testing and the development of alternative approaches are summarized. We argue that we need a systematic approach to integrating existing knowledge as exemplified by systematic reviews and other evidence-based approaches. Such knowledge can guide us in modelling these systems using bioengineering and virtual computer models, i.e., via systems biology or systems toxicology approaches. Experimental multi-organ-on-chip and microphysiological systems (MPS) provide a more physiological view of the organism, facilitating more comprehensive coverage of systemic toxicities, i.e., the perturbation on organism level, without using substitute organisms (animals). The next challenge is to establish disease models, i.e., micropathophysiological systems (MPPS), to expand their utility to encompass biomedicine. Combining computational and experimental systems approaches and the chal-lenges of validating them are discussed. The suggested 3S approach promises to leverage 21st century technology and systematic thinking to achieve a paradigm change in studying systemic effects.

  8. Computational intelligence approaches for pattern discovery in biological systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Fogel, Gary B

    2008-07-01

    Biology, chemistry and medicine are faced by tremendous challenges caused by an overwhelming amount of data and the need for rapid interpretation. Computational intelligence (CI) approaches such as artificial neural networks, fuzzy systems and evolutionary computation are being used with increasing frequency to contend with this problem, in light of noise, non-linearity and temporal dynamics in the data. Such methods can be used to develop robust models of processes either on their own or in combination with standard statistical approaches. This is especially true for database mining, where modeling is a key component of scientific understanding. This review provides an introduction to current CI methods, their application to biological problems, and concludes with a commentary about the anticipated impact of these approaches in bioinformatics.

  9. Hydrogen production from biomass by biological systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Sharifan, H.R.; Qader, S.

    2009-01-01

    Hydrogen gas is seen as a future energy carrier, not involved in 'greenhouse' gas and its released energy in combustion can be converted to electric power. Biological system with low energy can produce hydrogen compared to electrochemical hydrogen production via solar battery-based water splitting which requires the use of solar batteries with high energy requirements. The biological hydrogen production occurs in microalgae and cyanobacteria by photosynthesis. They consume biochemical energy to produce molecular hydrogen. Hydrogen in some algae is an anaerobic production in the absence of light. In cyanobacteria the hydrogen production simultaneously happens with nitrogen fixation, and also catalyzed by nitrogenase as a side reaction. Hydrogen production by photosynthetic bacteria is mediated by nitrogenase activity, although hydrogenases may be active for both hydrogen production and hydrogen uptake under some conditions. Genetic studies on photosynthetic microorganisms have markedly increased in recent times, relatively few genetic engineering studies have focused on altering the characteristics of these microorganisms, particularly with respect to enhancing the hydrogen-producing capabilities of photosynthetic bacteria and cyanobacteria. (author)

  10. Understanding Bateson and Maturana: Toward a Biological Foundation for the Social Sciences.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dell, Paul F.

    1985-01-01

    Offers a study guide for translating the work of Gregory Bateson and Humberto R. Maturana. Demonstrates that their work is highly compatible. Highlights their essential message: social systems and all human endeavor must be understood in light of our existence as biological entities. (BH)

  11. Modeling life the mathematics of biological systems

    CERN Document Server

    Garfinkel, Alan; Guo, Yina

    2017-01-01

    From predator-prey populations in an ecosystem, to hormone regulation within the body, the natural world abounds in dynamical systems that affect us profoundly. This book develops the mathematical tools essential for students in the life sciences to describe these interacting systems and to understand and predict their behavior. Complex feedback relations and counter-intuitive responses are common in dynamical systems in nature; this book develops the quantitative skills needed to explore these interactions. Differential equations are the natural mathematical tool for quantifying change, and are the driving force throughout this book. The use of Euler’s method makes nonlinear examples tractable and accessible to a broad spectrum of early-stage undergraduates, thus providing a practical alternative to the procedural approach of a traditional Calculus curriculum. Tools are developed within numerous, relevant examples, with an emphasis on the construction, evaluation, and interpretation of mathematical models ...

  12. Systems Biology of Metabolism: Annual Review of Biochemistry

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Jens

    2017-01-01

    Metabolism is highly complex and involves thousands of different connected reactions; it is therefore necessary to use mathematical models for holistic studies. The use of mathematical models in biology is referred to as systems biology. In this review, the principles of systems biology......, the application of systems biology for analyzing global regulatory structures, engineering the metabolism of cell factories, and analyzing human diseases is discussed....

  13. Optical engineering: understanding optical system by experiments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Scharf, Toralf

    2017-08-01

    Students have to be educated in theoretical and practical matters. Only one of them does not allow attacking complex problems in research, development, and management. After their study, students should be able to design, construct and analyze technical problems at highest levels of complexity. Who never experienced the difficulty of setting up measurements will not be able to understand, plan and manage such complex tasks in her/his future career. At EPFL a course was developed for bachelor education and is based on three pillars: concrete actions (enactive) to be done by the students, a synthesis of their work by writing a report (considered as the iconic part) and inputs from the teacher to generalize the findings and link it to a possible complete abstract description (symbolic). Intensive tutoring allowed an intermodal transfer between these categories. This EIS method originally introduced by Jerome Bruner for small children is particular well adapted for engineer education for which theoretical understanding often is not enough. The symbiosis of ex-cathedra lecture and practical work in a classroom-like situation presents an innovative step towards integrated learning that complements perfectly more abstract course principles like online courses.

  14. Computational Modeling of Biological Systems From Molecules to Pathways

    CERN Document Server

    2012-01-01

    Computational modeling is emerging as a powerful new approach for studying and manipulating biological systems. Many diverse methods have been developed to model, visualize, and rationally alter these systems at various length scales, from atomic resolution to the level of cellular pathways. Processes taking place at larger time and length scales, such as molecular evolution, have also greatly benefited from new breeds of computational approaches. Computational Modeling of Biological Systems: From Molecules to Pathways provides an overview of established computational methods for the modeling of biologically and medically relevant systems. It is suitable for researchers and professionals working in the fields of biophysics, computational biology, systems biology, and molecular medicine.

  15. Understanding The Resistance to Health Information Systems

    OpenAIRE

    David Ackah; Angelito E Alvarado; Heru Santoso Wahito Nugroho; Sanglar Polnok; Wiwin Martiningsih

    2017-01-01

    User resistance is users’ opposition to system implementation. Resistance often occurs as a result of a mismatch between management goals and employee preferences. There are two types of resistance to health iformation system namely active resistance and passive resistance. The manifestation of active resistance are being critical,  blaming/accusing, blocking, fault finding, sabotaging, undermining, ridiculing, intimidating/threatening, starting rumors, appealing to fear, manipulating arguing...

  16. Integrative Systems Biology: Elucidating Complex Traits

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Pers, Tune Hannes

    Risk-phenotypes and diseases are oen caused by perturbed cellular networks, as biological processes depend on an overwhelming number of heavily intertwined components. e impact of a genetically altered gene may ripple through its molecular neighborhood instead of being confined to the gene...... product itself. My doctoral studies have been focused on the development of integrative approaches to identify systemic risk-modifying and disease-causing patterns. ey have been rooted in the hypothesis that data integration of complementary data sets may yield additional etiologic insights compared...... to analyses conducted within a single type of data. e first line of research presented here outlines two integrative methodologies designed to identify etiological pathways and susceptibility genes. In Paper I, my coworkers and I present an integrative approach that interrogates protein complexes...

  17. Systems Biology and Ecology of Streamlined Bacterioplankton

    Science.gov (United States)

    Giovannoni, S. J.

    2014-12-01

    complex questions hinge on translating gene frequencies into trait based ecological models that reflect the systems biology of cells.

  18. Application of integrative genomics and systems biology to conventional and in vitro reproductive traits in cattle

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mazzoni, Gianluca; Pedersen, Hanne S.; de Oliveira Junior, Gerson A.

    2017-01-01

    by both conventional and ARTs such as OPU-IVP. The integration of systems biology information across different biological layers generates a complete view of the different molecular networks that control complex traits and can provide a strong contribution to the understanding of traits related to ARTs....

  19. Applying systems biology methods to the study of human physiology in extreme environments.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Edwards, Lindsay M; Thiele, Ines

    2013-03-22

    Systems biology is defined in this review as 'an iterative process of computational model building and experimental model revision with the aim of understanding or simulating complex biological systems'. We propose that, in practice, systems biology rests on three pillars: computation, the omics disciplines and repeated experimental perturbation of the system of interest. The number of ethical and physiologically relevant perturbations that can be used in experiments on healthy humans is extremely limited and principally comprises exercise, nutrition, infusions (e.g. Intralipid), some drugs and altered environment. Thus, we argue that systems biology and environmental physiology are natural symbionts for those interested in a system-level understanding of human biology. However, despite excellent progress in high-altitude genetics and several proteomics studies, systems biology research into human adaptation to extreme environments is in its infancy. A brief description and overview of systems biology in its current guise is given, followed by a mini review of computational methods used for modelling biological systems. Special attention is given to high-altitude research, metabolic network reconstruction and constraint-based modelling.

  20. Production monitoring system for understanding product robustness

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Boorla, Srinivasa Murthy; Howard, Thomas J.

    2016-01-01

    study is used to demonstrate how the monitoring system can be used to efficiently guide corrective action to improve product performance. It is claimed that the monitoring system can be used to dramatically cut the time taken to identify, planand execute corrective action related to typical quality...... to be seven days. Using the monitoring system for the PRECI‐IN case, similar corrective action would have been achieved almost immediately.......In the current quality paradigm, the performance of a product is kept within specification by ensuring that its parts are within specification. Product performance is then validated after final assembly. However, this does not control how robust the product performance is, i.e. how much...

  1. Preparation and Characterization Challenges to Understanding Environmental and Biological Impacts of Ceria Nanoparticles

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Karakoti, Ajay S.; Munusamy, Prabhakaran; Hostetler, Kasey E.; Kodali, Vamsi K.; Kuchibhatla, Satyanarayana V N T; Orr, Galya; Pounds, Joel G.; Teeguarden, Justin G.; Thrall, Brian D.; Baer, Donald R.

    2012-08-01

    It has been increasingly recognized that understanding and predicting the behaviors of nanoparticles is often limited by the degree to which the particles can be reliably produced and are adequately characterized. Examining data from the literature for ceria nanoparticles suggests that thermal history is one factor that has a strong influence on biological impact. Thermal processing may alter many physicochemical properties of the particles including density, crystal structure and the presence of surface contamination, but these may not be sufficiently recorded or reported to determine the ultimate source of an observed impact. A second example shows the types of difficulties that can be encountered in efforts to apply a well-studied synthesis route to producing well defined particles for biological studies. These examples and others highlight the importance of characterizing particles thoroughly and recording details of particle processing and history that are often not recorded and/or reported.

  2. New Methods for Understanding Systems Consolidation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Tayler, Kaycie K.; Wiltgen, Brian J.

    2013-01-01

    According to the standard model of systems consolidation (SMC), neocortical circuits are reactivated during the retrieval of declarative memories. This process initially requires the hippocampus. However, with the passage of time, neocortical circuits become strengthened and can eventually retrieve memory without input from the hippocampus.…

  3. Systems biology in practice: concepts, implementation and application

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Klipp, E

    2005-01-01

    ... approaching systems biology from a different discipline. We see the origin and the methodological foundations for systems biology (1) in the accumulation of detailed biological knowledge with the prospect of utilization in biotechnology and health care, (2) in the emergence of new experimental techniques in genomics and proteomics, (3) in the traditio...

  4. Quality of Life Philosophy III. Towards a New Biology: Understanding the Biological Connection between Quality of Life, Disease, and Healing

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Soren Ventegodt

    2003-01-01

    Full Text Available This paper addresses (in a philosophical way the complex and enigmatic interface between matter, life, and consciousness in modern medical science. The problem today in understanding living matter is not at the molecular level, but at the macro level where all molecular activities in the individual cell are coordinated, and especially at a higher level, where the activities of all the organism’s cells are coordinated. Although we understand very much of the body’s chemistry, we have only just started to get the gist of the tremendous organization of living matter. We are just beginning to acknowledge the enormous flow of information that is needed to make everything function in a healthy organism, including consciousness, where every cell does exactly what it has to do to make the organs function.A concept that seems to be able to bridge the scientifically very different domains of matter, life, and consciousness seems to be “biological information”. If a cell is seen as a liquid crystal in which the cell’s molecules constantly connect in firm mutual relationships only to dissolve again and become fluid and free, whenever the cell needs it, the backbone of the cell seems to be the information that organizes the cell. For example, in cell motion a cell is able to crawl with the help of a skeleton of fibers that can be created guided by biological information, whenever the cell needs the solidity provided by the fibers. The moment it has finished crawling or intends to crawl in another direction, these fibers will dissolve again. The fibers are made of millions of molecules that connect in an arranged pattern, and they dissolve when these molecules again let go of each other. How the cell precisely regulates such processes is today a complete mystery. How cells cocreate consciousness is also an enigma. All we can do is describe the cell and the organisms arising from its cells as filled with energy and information as well as an

  5. Comparative Pathogenesis and Systems Biology for Biodefense Virus Vaccine Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Gavin C. Bowick

    2010-01-01

    Full Text Available Developing vaccines to biothreat agents presents a number of challenges for discovery, preclinical development, and licensure. The need for high containment to work with live agents limits the amount and types of research that can be done using complete pathogens, and small markets reduce potential returns for industry. However, a number of tools, from comparative pathogenesis of viral strains at the molecular level to novel computational approaches, are being used to understand the basis of viral attenuation and characterize protective immune responses. As the amount of basic molecular knowledge grows, we will be able to take advantage of these tools not only to rationally attenuate virus strains for candidate vaccines, but also to assess immunogenicity and safety in silico. This review discusses how a basic understanding of pathogenesis, allied with systems biology and machine learning methods, can impact biodefense vaccinology.

  6. Understanding the Reading Attributes and Their Cognitive Relationships on a High-Stakes Biology Assessment

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rawlusyk, Kevin James

    Test items used to assess learners' knowledge on high-stakes science examinations contain contextualized questions that unintentionally assess reading skill along with conceptual knowledge. Therefore, students who are not proficient readers are unable to comprehend the text within the test item to demonstrate effectively their level of science knowledge. The purpose of this quantitative study was to understand what reading attributes were required to successfully answer the Biology 30 Diploma Exam. Furthermore, the research sought to understand the cognitive relationships among the reading attributes through quantitative analysis structured by the Attribute Hierarchy Model (AHM). The research consisted of two phases: (1) Cognitive development, where the cognitive attributes of the Biology 30 Exam were specified and hierarchy structures were developed; and (2) Psychometric analysis, that statistically tested the attribute hierarchy using the Hierarchy Consistency Index (HCI), and calculate attribute probabilities. Phase one of the research used January 2011, Biology 30 Diploma Exam, while phase two accessed archival data for the 9985 examinees who took the assessment on January 24th, 2011. Phase one identified ten specific reading attributes, of which five were identified as unique subsets of vocabulary, two were identified as reading visual representations, and three corresponded to general reading skills. Four hierarchical cognitive model were proposed then analyzed using the HCI as a mechanism to explain the relationship among the attributes. Model A had the highest HCI value (0.337), indicating an overall poor data fit, yet for the top achieving examinees the model had an excellent model fit with an HCI value of 0.888, and for examinees that scored over 60% there was a moderate model fit (HCI = 0.592). Linear regressions of the attribute probability estimates suggest that there is a cognitive relationship among six of the ten reading attributes (R2 = 0.958 and 0

  7. Understanding The Resistance to Health Information Systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David Ackah

    2017-07-01

    Full Text Available User resistance is users’ opposition to system implementation. Resistance often occurs as a result of a mismatch between management goals and employee preferences. There are two types of resistance to health iformation system namely active resistance and passive resistance. The manifestation of active resistance are being critical,  blaming/accusing, blocking, fault finding, sabotaging, undermining, ridiculing, intimidating/threatening, starting rumors, appealing to fear, manipulating arguing, using facts selectively, distorting facts and  raising objections. The manifestation of passive resistance are agreeing verbally but not following through, failing to implement change, procrastinating/dragging feet, feigning ignorance, withholding information, suggestions, help or support, and standing by and allowing the change to fail.

  8. Applying systems biology methods to the study of human physiology in extreme environments

    Science.gov (United States)

    2013-01-01

    Systems biology is defined in this review as ‘an iterative process of computational model building and experimental model revision with the aim of understanding or simulating complex biological systems’. We propose that, in practice, systems biology rests on three pillars: computation, the omics disciplines and repeated experimental perturbation of the system of interest. The number of ethical and physiologically relevant perturbations that can be used in experiments on healthy humans is extremely limited and principally comprises exercise, nutrition, infusions (e.g. Intralipid), some drugs and altered environment. Thus, we argue that systems biology and environmental physiology are natural symbionts for those interested in a system-level understanding of human biology. However, despite excellent progress in high-altitude genetics and several proteomics studies, systems biology research into human adaptation to extreme environments is in its infancy. A brief description and overview of systems biology in its current guise is given, followed by a mini review of computational methods used for modelling biological systems. Special attention is given to high-altitude research, metabolic network reconstruction and constraint-based modelling. PMID:23849719

  9. A SYSTEMIC VISION OF BIOLOGY: OVERCOMING LINEARITY

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    M. Mayer

    2005-07-01

    Full Text Available Many  authors have proposed  that contextualization of reality  is necessary  to teach  Biology, empha- sizing students´ social and  economic realities.   However, contextualization means  more than  this;  it is related  to working with  different kinds of phenomena  and/or objects  which enable  the  expression of scientific concepts.  Thus,  contextualization allows the integration of different contents.  Under this perspective,  the  objectives  of this  work were to articulate different  biology concepts  in order  to de- velop a systemic vision of biology; to establish  relationships with other areas of knowledge and to make concrete the  cell molecular  structure and organization as well as their  implications  on living beings´ environment, using  contextualization.  The  methodology  adopted  in this  work  was based  on three aspects:  interdisciplinarity, contextualization and development of competences,  using energy:  its flux and transformations as a thematic axis and  an approach  which allowed the  interconnection between different situations involving  these  concepts.   The  activities developed  were:  1.   dialectic exercise, involving a movement around  micro and macroscopic aspects,  by using questions  and activities,  sup- ported  by the use of alternative material  (as springs, candles on the energy, its forms, transformations and  implications  in the  biological way (microscopic  concepts;  2, Construction of molecular  models, approaching the concepts of atom,  chemical bonds and bond energy in molecules; 3. Observations de- veloped in Manguezal¨(mangrove swamp  ecosystem (Itapissuma, PE  were used to work macroscopic concepts  (as  diversity  and  classification  of plants  and  animals,  concerning  to  energy  flow through food chains and webs. A photograph register of all activities  along the course plus texts

  10. Systems Biology Approach to Understanding Post-traumatic Stress Disorder

    Science.gov (United States)

    2015-01-14

    can be used for the accurate diagnosis , prognosis, and evaluation of therapeutics for the disorder. Although many candi- date biomarkers have been...the identification of subgroups from DNAmicroarray data has previously been applied to the study of diseases such as cancer and fibromyalgia .91–93 3...therapeutic applications. The time dependent profile, different for each subject, further complicates the diagnosis . A recent clinical study89 has shown

  11. Programmable temperature control system for biological materials

    Science.gov (United States)

    Anselmo, V. J.; Harrison, R. G.; Rinfret, A. P.

    1982-01-01

    A system was constructed which allows programmable temperature-time control for a 5 cu cm sample volume of arbitrary biological material. The system also measures the parameters necessary for the determination of the sample volume specific heat and thermal conductivity as a function of temperature, and provides a detailed measurement of the temperature during phase change and a means of calculating the heat of the phase change. Steady-state and dynamic temperature control is obtained by supplying heat to the sample volume through resistive elements constructed as an integral part of the sample container. For cooling purposes, this container is totally immersed into a cold heat sink. Using a mixture of dry ice and alcohol at 79 C, the sample volume can be controlled from +40 to -60 C at rates from steady state to + or - 65 C/min. Steady-state temperature precision is better than 0.2 C, while the dynamic capability depends on the temperature rate of change as well as the mass of both the sample and the container.

  12. Drawing inspiration from biological optical systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wolpert, H. D.

    2009-08-01

    Bio-Mimicking/Bio-Inspiration: How can we not be inspired by Nature? Life has evolved on earth over the last 3.5 to 4 billion years. Materials formed during this time were not toxic; they were created at low temperatures and low pressures unlike many of the materials developed today. The natural materials formed are self-assembled, multifunctional, nonlinear, complex, adaptive, self-repairing and biodegradable. The designs that failed are fossils. Those that survived are the success stories. Natural materials are mostly formed from organics, inorganic crystals and amorphous phases. The materials make economic sense by optimizing the design of the structures or systems to meet multiple needs. We constantly "see" many similar strategies in approaches, between man and nature, but we seldom look at the details of natures approaches. The power of image processing, in many of natures creatures, is a detail that is often overlooked. Seldon does the engineer interact with the biologist and learn what nature has to teach us. The variety and complexity of biological materials and the optical systems formed should inspire us.

  13. Understanding symmetrical components for power system modeling

    CERN Document Server

    Das, J C

    2017-01-01

    This book utilizes symmetrical components for analyzing unbalanced three-phase electrical systems, by applying single-phase analysis tools. The author covers two approaches for studying symmetrical components; the physical approach, avoiding many mathematical matrix algebra equations, and a mathematical approach, using matrix theory. Divided into seven sections, topics include: symmetrical components using matrix methods, fundamental concepts of symmetrical components, symmetrical components –transmission lines and cables, sequence components of rotating equipment and static load, three-phase models of transformers and conductors, unsymmetrical fault calculations, and some limitations of symmetrical components.

  14. Complexity, Analysis and Control of Singular Biological Systems

    CERN Document Server

    Zhang, Qingling; Zhang, Xue

    2012-01-01

    Complexity, Analysis and Control of Singular Biological Systems follows the control of real-world biological systems at both ecological and phyisological levels concentrating on the application of now-extensively-investigated singular system theory. Much effort has recently been dedicated to the modelling and analysis of developing bioeconomic systems and the text establishes singular examples of these, showing how proper control can help to maintain sustainable economic development of biological resources. The book begins from the essentials of singular systems theory and bifurcations before tackling  the use of various forms of control in singular biological systems using examples including predator-prey relationships and viral vaccination and quarantine control. Researchers and graduate students studying the control of complex biological systems are shown how a variety of methods can be brought to bear and practitioners working with the economics of biological systems and their control will also find the ...

  15. Metabolic adaptation of a human pathogen during chronic infections - a systems biology approach

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Thøgersen, Juliane Charlotte

    modeling to uncover how human pathogens adapt to the human host. Pseudomonas aeruginosa infections in cystic fibrosis patients are used as a model system for under-­‐ standing these adaptation processes. The exploratory systems biology approach facilitates identification of important phenotypes...... by classical molecular biology approaches where genes and reactions typically are investigated in a one to one relationship. This thesis is an example of how mathematical approaches and modeling can facilitate new biologi-­‐ cal understanding and provide new surprising ideas to important biological processes....

  16. Modeling and Simulation Tools: From Systems Biology to Systems Medicine.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Olivier, Brett G; Swat, Maciej J; Moné, Martijn J

    2016-01-01

    Modeling is an integral component of modern biology. In this chapter we look into the role of the model, as it pertains to Systems Medicine, and the software that is required to instantiate and run it. We do this by comparing the development, implementation, and characteristics of tools that have been developed to work with two divergent methodologies: Systems Biology and Pharmacometrics. From the Systems Biology perspective we consider the concept of "Software as a Medical Device" and what this may imply for the migration of research-oriented, simulation software into the domain of human health.In our second perspective, we see how in practice hundreds of computational tools already accompany drug discovery and development at every stage of the process. Standardized exchange formats are required to streamline the model exchange between tools, which would minimize translation errors and reduce the required time. With the emergence, almost 15 years ago, of the SBML standard, a large part of the domain of interest is already covered and models can be shared and passed from software to software without recoding them. Until recently the last stage of the process, the pharmacometric analysis used in clinical studies carried out on subject populations, lacked such an exchange medium. We describe a new emerging exchange format in Pharmacometrics which covers the non-linear mixed effects models, the standard statistical model type used in this area. By interfacing these two formats the entire domain can be covered by complementary standards and subsequently the according tools.

  17. Thai in-service teacher understanding of nature of science in biology teaching: Case of Mali

    Science.gov (United States)

    Aiemsum-ang, Napapan; Yuenyong, Chokchai

    2018-01-01

    This paper aimed to investigate the existing ideas of nature of science (NOS) teaching in Thailand biology classroom. The study reported the existing ideas of nature of science (NOS) teaching of one biology teacher Mrs. Mali who had been teaching for 6 years at in a school in Khon Kaen city. Methodology regarded interpretive paradigm. Tools of interpretation included 2 months of classroom observation, interviewing, and questionnaire of NOS. The findings revealed Mali held good understanding of the nature of science in the aspect of the use of evidence, the aspect of knowledge inquiry through different observation and deduction, the aspect of creativity and imagination influencing science knowledge inquiry, and the aspect of changeable scientific knowledge. Her biology teaching indicated that she used both the deficient nature of science approach and the implicit nature of science approach. The implicit nature of science approach was applied mostly in 7 periods and only 2 periods were arranged using the deficient nature of science approach. The paper has implication for professional development and pre-service program on NOS teaching in Thailand.

  18. Toxicity of silver nanoparticles in biological systems: Does the complexity of biological systems matter?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Vazquez-Muñoz, Roberto; Borrego, Belen; Juárez-Moreno, Karla; García-García, Maritza; Mota Morales, Josué D; Bogdanchikova, Nina; Huerta-Saquero, Alejandro

    2017-07-05

    Currently, nanomaterials are more frequently in our daily life, specifically in biomedicine, electronics, food, textiles and catalysis just to name a few. Although nanomaterials provide many benefits, recently their toxicity profiles have begun to be explored. In this work, the toxic effects of silver nanoparticles (35nm-average diameter and Polyvinyl-Pyrrolidone-coated) on biological systems of different levels of complexity was assessed in a comprehensive and comparatively way, through a variety of viability and toxicological assays. The studied organisms included viruses, bacteria, microalgae, fungi, animal and human cells (including cancer cell lines). It was found that biological systems of different taxonomical groups are inhibited at concentrations of silver nanoparticles within the same order of magnitude. Thus, the toxicity of nanomaterials on biological/living systems, constrained by their complexity, e.g. taxonomic groups, resulted contrary to the expected. The fact that cells and virus are inhibited with a concentration of silver nanoparticles within the same order of magnitude could be explained considering that silver nanoparticles affects very primitive cellular mechanisms by interacting with fundamental structures for cells and virus alike. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  19. Understanding the limits of animal models as predictors of human biology: lessons learned from the sbv IMPROVER Species Translation Challenge.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rhrissorrakrai, Kahn; Belcastro, Vincenzo; Bilal, Erhan; Norel, Raquel; Poussin, Carine; Mathis, Carole; Dulize, Rémi H J; Ivanov, Nikolai V; Alexopoulos, Leonidas; Rice, J Jeremy; Peitsch, Manuel C; Stolovitzky, Gustavo; Meyer, Pablo; Hoeng, Julia

    2015-02-15

    Inferring how humans respond to external cues such as drugs, chemicals, viruses or hormones is an essential question in biomedicine. Very often, however, this question cannot be addressed because it is not possible to perform experiments in humans. A reasonable alternative consists of generating responses in animal models and 'translating' those results to humans. The limitations of such translation, however, are far from clear, and systematic assessments of its actual potential are urgently needed. sbv IMPROVER (systems biology verification for Industrial Methodology for PROcess VErification in Research) was designed as a series of challenges to address translatability between humans and rodents. This collaborative crowd-sourcing initiative invited scientists from around the world to apply their own computational methodologies on a multilayer systems biology dataset composed of phosphoproteomics, transcriptomics and cytokine data derived from normal human and rat bronchial epithelial cells exposed in parallel to 52 different stimuli under identical conditions. Our aim was to understand the limits of species-to-species translatability at different levels of biological organization: signaling, transcriptional and release of secreted factors (such as cytokines). Participating teams submitted 49 different solutions across the sub-challenges, two-thirds of which were statistically significantly better than random. Additionally, similar computational methods were found to range widely in their performance within the same challenge, and no single method emerged as a clear winner across all sub-challenges. Finally, computational methods were able to effectively translate some specific stimuli and biological processes in the lung epithelial system, such as DNA synthesis, cytoskeleton and extracellular matrix, translation, immune/inflammation and growth factor/proliferation pathways, better than the expected response similarity between species. pmeyerr@us.ibm.com or Julia

  20. Perceptual Influence of Ugandan Biology Students' Understanding of HIV/AIDS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mutonyi, Harriet; Nashon, Samson; Nielsen, Wendy S.

    2010-08-01

    In Uganda, curbing the spread of HIV/AIDS has largely depended on public and private media messages about the disease. Media campaigns based on Uganda’s cultural norms of communication are metaphorical, analogical and simile-like. The topic of HIV/AIDS has been introduced into the Senior Three (Grade 11) biology curriculum in Uganda. To what extent do students’ pre-conceptions of the disease, based on these media messages influence students’ development of conceptual understanding of the disease, its transmission and prevention? Of significant importance is the impact the conceptions students have developed from the indirect media messages on classroom instruction on HIV/AIDS. The study is based in a theoretical framework of conceptual change in science learning. An interpretive case study to determine the impact of Ugandan students’ conceptions or perceptions on classroom instruction about HIV/AIDS, involving 160 students aged 15-17, was conducted in four different Ugandan high schools: girls boarding, boys boarding, mixed boarding, and mixed day. Using questionnaires, focus group discussions, recorded biology lessons and informal interviews, students’ preconceptions of HIV/AIDS and how these impact lessons on HIV/AIDS were discerned. These preconceptions fall into four main categories: religious, political, conspiracy and traditional African worldviews. Results of data analysis suggest that students’ prior knowledge is persistent even after biology instructions. This has implications for current teaching approaches, which are mostly teacher-centred in Ugandan schools. A rethinking of the curriculum with the intent of offering science education programs that promote understanding of the science of HIV/AIDS as opposed to what is happening now—insensitivity to misconceptions about the disease—is needed.

  1. Systems biology: properties of reconstructed networks

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    Palsson, Bernhard

    2006-01-01

    ... between the mathematical ideas and biological processes are made clear, the book reflects the irreversible trend of increasing mathematical content in biology education. Therefore to assist both teacher and student, Palsson provides problem sets, projects, and PowerPoint slides in an associated web site and keeps the presentation in the book concrete with illustrat...

  2. Stochastic modelling of dynamical systems in biology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Pellin, Danilo

    2017-01-01

    In this thesis two relevant biological problems will be addressed from a statistical modelling perspective. The first regards the study of hematopoiesis, a still not well understood biological process rarely observable in humans due to technical and ethical reasons. Hematopoiesis is responsible for

  3. Isotopic fractionation of tritium in biological systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Le Goff, Pierre; Fromm, Michel; Vichot, Laurent; Badot, Pierre-Marie; Guétat, Philippe

    2014-04-01

    Isotopic fractionation of tritium is a highly relevant issue in radiation protection and requires certain radioecological considerations. Sound evaluation of this factor is indeed necessary to determine whether environmental compartments are enriched/depleted in tritium or if tritium is, on the contrary, isotopically well-distributed in a given system. The ubiquity of tritium and the standard analytical methods used to assay it may induce biases in both the measurement and the signification that is accorded to the so-called fractionation: based on an exhaustive review of the literature, we show how, sometimes large deviations may appear. It is shown that when comparing the non-exchangeable fraction of organically bound tritium (neOBT) to another fraction of tritium (e.g. tritiated water) the preparation of samples and the measurement of neOBT reported frequently led to underestimation of the ratio of tritium to hydrogen (T/H) in the non-exchangeable compartment by a factor of 5% to 50%. In the present study, corrections are proposed for most of the biological matrices studied so far. Nevertheless, the values of isotopic fractionation reported in the literature remain difficult to compare with each other, especially since the physical quantities and units often vary between authors. Some improvements are proposed to better define what should encompass the concepts of exchangeable and non-exchangeable fractions. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Features of Knowledge Building in Biology: Understanding Undergraduate Students' Ideas about Molecular Mechanisms.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Southard, Katelyn; Wince, Tyler; Meddleton, Shanice; Bolger, Molly S

    2016-01-01

    Research has suggested that teaching and learning in molecular and cellular biology (MCB) is difficult. We used a new lens to understand undergraduate reasoning about molecular mechanisms: the knowledge-integration approach to conceptual change. Knowledge integration is the dynamic process by which learners acquire new ideas, develop connections between ideas, and reorganize and restructure prior knowledge. Semistructured, clinical think-aloud interviews were conducted with introductory and upper-division MCB students. Interviews included a written conceptual assessment, a concept-mapping activity, and an opportunity to explain the biomechanisms of DNA replication, transcription, and translation. Student reasoning patterns were explored through mixed-method analyses. Results suggested that students must sort mechanistic entities into appropriate mental categories that reflect the nature of MCB mechanisms and that conflation between these categories is common. We also showed how connections between molecular mechanisms and their biological roles are part of building an integrated knowledge network as students develop expertise. We observed differences in the nature of connections between ideas related to different forms of reasoning. Finally, we provide a tentative model for MCB knowledge integration and suggest its implications for undergraduate learning. © 2016 K. Southard et al. CBE—Life Sciences Education © 2016 The American Society for Cell Biology. This article is distributed by The American Society for Cell Biology under license from the author(s). It is available to the public under an Attribution–Noncommercial–Share Alike 3.0 Unported Creative Commons License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/3.0).

  5. A Guide to Understanding Data Remanence in Automated Information Systems

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    1991-01-01

    The purpose of A Guide to Understanding Data Remanence in Automated Information Systems is to provide information to personnel responsible for the secure handling of sensitive automated information system (AIS...

  6. Cellular respiration: replicating in vivo systems biology for in ...

    Science.gov (United States)

    This editorial develops a philosophy for expanding the scope of Journal of Breath Research (JBR) into the realm of cellular level study, and links certain topics back to more traditional systemic research for understanding human health based on exhaled breath constituents. The express purpose is to provide a publication outlet for novel breath related research that includes in vitro studies, especially those that explore the biological origin and expression of compounds that may ultimately influence the constituents of exhaled breath. The new topics include all manner of methods and instrumentations for making in vivo and in vitro measurements, the use of different biological media (blood, urine saliva, swabs) including human and microbial cell-lines, in vitro kinetic studies of metabolism, and advances in ex vivo methods for maintaining metabolic competency and viability of biological samples. Traditionally, JBR has published articles on human breath analysis for diagnosing disease, tracking health state, assessing the dose and effect of exogenous chemicals, and contributions of malodorous compounds from the oral/nasal cavity. These have also included research describing novel sampling and analytical technologies, most notably those implementing mass spectrometry, chemical sensors and optical measurement instrumentation (Amann and Smith 2013). The journal’s original scope has also embraced animal models as surrogates for human sampling, new mathematical and

  7. Consensus statement understanding health and malnutrition through a systems approach: the ENOUGH program for early life.

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Kaput, J.; Ommen, van B.; Kremer, B.; Priami, C.; Pontes Monteiro, J.; Morine, M.; Pepping, F.; Diaz, Z.; Fenech, M.; He, Y.; Albers, R.; Drevon, C.A.; Evelo, C.T.; Hancock, R.E.W.; Ijsselmuiden, C.; Lumey, L.H.; Minihane, A.M.; Muller, M.R.; Murgia, C.; Radonjic, M.; Sobral, B.W.S.; West Jr., K.P.

    2014-01-01

    Nutrition research, like most biomedical disciplines, adopted and often uses experimental approaches based on Beadle and Tatum’s one gene—one polypeptide hypothesis, thereby reducing biological processes to single reactions or pathways. Systems thinking is needed to understand the complexity of

  8. Understanding the sediment routing system along the Gulf of ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Understanding the sediment routing system along the Gulf of Kachchh coast, western India: Significance of small ephemeral rivers ... is an attempt towards understanding the sediment routing system in the semi-arid margin of the Gulf of Kachchh, which is one of the largest macrotidal regimes in the northern Arabian Sea.

  9. Impact of systems biology on metabolic engineering of Saccharomyces cerevisiae

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Nielsen, Jens; Jewett, Michael Christopher

    2008-01-01

    in the industrial application of this yeast. Developments in genomics and high-throughput systems biology tools are enhancing one's ability to rapidly characterize cellular behaviour, which is valuable in the field of metabolic engineering where strain characterization is often the bottleneck in strain development...... programmes. Here, the impact of systems biology on metabolic engineering is reviewed and perspectives on the role of systems biology in the design of cell factories are given....

  10. Understanding pathologic variants of renal cell carcinoma: distilling therapeutic opportunities from biologic complexity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Shuch, Brian; Amin, Ali; Armstrong, Andrew J; Eble, John N; Ficarra, Vincenzo; Lopez-Beltran, Antonio; Martignoni, Guido; Rini, Brian I; Kutikov, Alexander

    2015-01-01

    Once believed to represent a uniform malignant phenotype, renal cell carcinoma (RCC) is now viewed as a diverse group of cancers that arise from the nephron. To review the pathologic characteristics, clinical behavior, molecular biology, and systemic therapy options of recognized RCC histologic subtypes. A systematic review of English-language articles was performed using the Medline and Web of Science databases. Manuscripts were selected with consensus of the coauthors and evaluated using the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses (PRISMA) criteria. The major findings of the evaluated manuscripts are discussed with an emphasis on the description of the pathologic features, clinical behavior, prognosis, and therapeutic strategies. Classification schemes for kidney cancer have undergone dramatic changes over the past two decades. Improvements in these classification schemes are important, as pathologic variants differ not only in disease biology, but also in clinical behavior, prognosis, and response to systemic therapy. In the era of genomic medicine, further refinements in characterization of RCC subtypes will be critical to the progress of this burgeoning clinical space. Kidney cancer can be subdivided into related but different cancers that arise from the kidney's tubules. In this article we review current classifications for kidney cancer, discuss their characteristics, and provide an overview of each subtype's clinical behavior and treatment. We stress that each subtype harbors unique biology and thus responds differently to available treatment strategies. Copyright © 2014 European Association of Urology. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Computational Strategies for a System-Level Understanding of Metabolism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cazzaniga, Paolo; Damiani, Chiara; Besozzi, Daniela; Colombo, Riccardo; Nobile, Marco S.; Gaglio, Daniela; Pescini, Dario; Molinari, Sara; Mauri, Giancarlo; Alberghina, Lilia; Vanoni, Marco

    2014-01-01

    Cell metabolism is the biochemical machinery that provides energy and building blocks to sustain life. Understanding its fine regulation is of pivotal relevance in several fields, from metabolic engineering applications to the treatment of metabolic disorders and cancer. Sophisticated computational approaches are needed to unravel the complexity of metabolism. To this aim, a plethora of methods have been developed, yet it is generally hard to identify which computational strategy is most suited for the investigation of a specific aspect of metabolism. This review provides an up-to-date description of the computational methods available for the analysis of metabolic pathways, discussing their main advantages and drawbacks.  In particular, attention is devoted to the identification of the appropriate scale and level of accuracy in the reconstruction of metabolic networks, and to the inference of model structure and parameters, especially when dealing with a shortage of experimental measurements. The choice of the proper computational methods to derive in silico data is then addressed, including topological analyses, constraint-based modeling and simulation of the system dynamics. A description of some computational approaches to gain new biological knowledge or to formulate hypotheses is finally provided. PMID:25427076

  12. Toward an Understanding of the Epistemic Values of Biological Scientists as Expressed in Scholarly Publication

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dunn, Kathel

    2010-01-01

    This dissertation develops a deeper understanding of the epistemic values of scientists, specifically exploring the proposed values of community, collaboration, connectivity and credit as part of the scholarly communication system. These values are the essence of scientists actively engaged in conducting science and in communicating their work to…

  13. Breeding system and pollination biology of the semidomesticated ...

    African Journals Online (AJOL)

    Breeding system and pollination biology of the semidomesticated fruit tree, Tamarindus indica L. (Leguminosae: Caesalpinioideae ): Implications for fruit production, selective breeding, and conservation of genetic resources.

  14. High School Students' Understanding of the Human Body System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Assaraf, Orit Ben-Zvi; Dodick, Jeff; Tripto, Jaklin

    2013-01-01

    In this study, 120 tenth-grade students from 8 schools were examined to determine the extent of their ability to perceive the human body as a system after completing the first stage in their biology curriculum--"The human body, emphasizing homeostasis". The students' systems thinking was analyzed according to the STH thinking model, which roughly…

  15. Teaching statistics in biology: using inquiry-based learning to strengthen understanding of statistical analysis in biology laboratory courses.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Metz, Anneke M

    2008-01-01

    There is an increasing need for students in the biological sciences to build a strong foundation in quantitative approaches to data analyses. Although most science, engineering, and math field majors are required to take at least one statistics course, statistical analysis is poorly integrated into undergraduate biology course work, particularly at the lower-division level. Elements of statistics were incorporated into an introductory biology course, including a review of statistics concepts and opportunity for students to perform statistical analysis in a biological context. Learning gains were measured with an 11-item statistics learning survey instrument developed for the course. Students showed a statistically significant 25% (p biology. Students improved their scores on the survey after completing introductory biology, even if they had previously completed an introductory statistics course (9%, improvement p biology showed no loss of their statistics knowledge as measured by this instrument, suggesting that the use of statistics in biology course work may aid long-term retention of statistics knowledge. No statistically significant differences in learning were detected between male and female students in the study.

  16. Systems biology, connectivity and the future of medicine

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Greef, J. van der

    2005-01-01

    The concept of systems-based strategies in medicine is emerging, with systems pathology guiding an understanding of the multidimensional aspects of disease system fingerprints and systems pharmacology providing insight into dynamic system responses upon (multiple) drug perturbations. Knowledge of

  17. A Magnetic Sensor System for Biological Detection

    KAUST Repository

    Li, Fuquan

    2015-05-01

    Magnetic biosensors detect biological targets through sensing the stray field of magnetic beads which label the targets. Commonly, magnetic biosensors employ the “sandwich” method to immobilize biological targets, i.e., the targets are sandwiched between a bio-functionalized sensor surface and bio-functionalized magnetic beads. This method has been used very successfully in different application, but its execution requires a rather elaborate procedure including several washing and incubation steps. This dissertation investigates a new magnetic biosensor concept, which enables a simple and effective detection of biological targets. The biosensor takes advantage of the size difference between bare magnetic beads and compounds of magnetic beads and biological targets. First, the detection of super-paramagnetic beads via magnetic tunnel junction (MTJ) sensors is implemented. Frequency modulation is used to enhance the signal-to-noise ratio, enabling the detection of a single magnetic bead. Second, the concept of the magnetic biosensor is investigated theoretically. The biosensor consists of an MTJ sensor, which detects the stray field of magnetic beads inside of a trap on top of the MTJ. A microwire between the trap and the MTJ is used to attract magnetic beads to the trapping well by applying a current to it. The MTJ sensor’s output depends on the number of beads inside the trap. If biological targets are in the sample solution, the beads will form bead compounds consisting of beads linked to the biological targets. Since bead compounds are larger than bare beads, the number of beads inside the trapping well will depend on the presence of biological targets. Hence, the output of the MTJ sensor will depend on the biological targets. The dependences of sensor signals on the sizes of the MTJ sensor, magnetic beads and biological targets are studied to find the optimum constellations for the detection of specific biological targets. The optimization is demonstrated

  18. Biological and geophysical feedbacks with fire in the Earth system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Archibald, S.; Lehmann, C. E. R.; Belcher, C. M.; Bond, W. J.; Bradstock, R. A.; Daniau, A.-L.; Dexter, K. G.; Forrestel, E. J.; Greve, M.; He, T.; Higgins, S. I.; Hoffmann, W. A.; Lamont, B. B.; McGlinn, D. J.; Moncrieff, G. R.; Osborne, C. P.; Pausas, J. G.; Price, O.; Ripley, B. S.; Rogers, B. M.; Schwilk, D. W.; Simon, M. F.; Turetsky, M. R.; Van der Werf, G. R.; Zanne, A. E.

    2018-03-01

    Roughly 3% of the Earth’s land surface burns annually, representing a critical exchange of energy and matter between the land and atmosphere via combustion. Fires range from slow smouldering peat fires, to low-intensity surface fires, to intense crown fires, depending on vegetation structure, fuel moisture, prevailing climate, and weather conditions. While the links between biogeochemistry, climate and fire are widely studied within Earth system science, these relationships are also mediated by fuels—namely plants and their litter—that are the product of evolutionary and ecological processes. Fire is a powerful selective force and, over their evolutionary history, plants have evolved traits that both tolerate and promote fire numerous times and across diverse clades. Here we outline a conceptual framework of how plant traits determine the flammability of ecosystems and interact with climate and weather to influence fire regimes. We explore how these evolutionary and ecological processes scale to impact biogeochemical and Earth system processes. Finally, we outline several research challenges that, when resolved, will improve our understanding of the role of plant evolution in mediating the fire feedbacks driving Earth system processes. Understanding current patterns of fire and vegetation, as well as patterns of fire over geological time, requires research that incorporates evolutionary biology, ecology, biogeography, and the biogeosciences.

  19. EGFR-Targeting as a Biological Therapy: Understanding Nimotuzumab's Clinical Effects

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Perez, Rolando; Moreno, Ernesto; Garrido, Greta; Crombet, Tania

    2011-01-01

    Current clinical trials of epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)-targeted therapies are mostly guided by a classical approach coming from the cytotoxic paradigm. The predominant view is that the efficacy of EGFR antagonists correlates with skin rash toxicity and induction of objective clinical response. Clinical benefit from EGFR-targeted therapies is well documented; however, chronic use in advanced cancer patients has been limited due to cumulative and chemotherapy-enhanced toxicity. Here we analyze different pieces of data from mechanistic and clinical studies with the anti-EGFR monoclonal antibody Nimotuzumab, which provides several clues to understand how this antibody may induce a biological control of tumor growth while keeping a low toxicity profile. Based on these results and the current state of the art on EGFR-targeted therapies, we discuss the need to evaluate new therapeutic approaches using anti-EGFR agents, which would have the potential of transforming advanced cancer into a long-term controlled chronic disease

  20. The role of mathematical models in understanding pattern formation in developmental biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Umulis, David M; Othmer, Hans G

    2015-05-01

    In a Wall Street Journal article published on April 5, 2013, E. O. Wilson attempted to make the case that biologists do not really need to learn any mathematics-whenever they run into difficulty with numerical issues, they can find a technician (aka mathematician) to help them out of their difficulty. He formalizes this in Wilsons Principle No. 1: "It is far easier for scientists to acquire needed collaboration from mathematicians and statisticians than it is for mathematicians and statisticians to find scientists able to make use of their equations." This reflects a complete misunderstanding of the role of mathematics in all sciences throughout history. To Wilson, mathematics is mere number crunching, but as Galileo said long ago, "The laws of Nature are written in the language of mathematics[Formula: see text] the symbols are triangles, circles and other geometrical figures, without whose help it is impossible to comprehend a single word." Mathematics has moved beyond the geometry-based model of Galileo's time, and in a rebuttal to Wilson, E. Frenkel has pointed out the role of mathematics in synthesizing the general principles in science (Both point and counter-point are available in Wilson and Frenkel in Notices Am Math Soc 60(7):837-838, 2013). We will take this a step further and show how mathematics has been used to make new and experimentally verified discoveries in developmental biology and how mathematics is essential for understanding a problem that has puzzled experimentalists for decades-that of how organisms can scale in size. Mathematical analysis alone cannot "solve" these problems since the validation lies at the molecular level, but conversely, a growing number of questions in biology cannot be solved without mathematical analysis and modeling. Herein, we discuss a few examples of the productive intercourse between mathematics and biology.

  1. Features of Knowledge Building in Biology: Understanding Undergraduate Students’ Ideas about Molecular Mechanisms

    Science.gov (United States)

    Southard, Katelyn; Wince, Tyler; Meddleton, Shanice; Bolger, Molly S.

    2016-01-01

    Research has suggested that teaching and learning in molecular and cellular biology (MCB) is difficult. We used a new lens to understand undergraduate reasoning about molecular mechanisms: the knowledge-integration approach to conceptual change. Knowledge integration is the dynamic process by which learners acquire new ideas, develop connections between ideas, and reorganize and restructure prior knowledge. Semistructured, clinical think-aloud interviews were conducted with introductory and upper-division MCB students. Interviews included a written conceptual assessment, a concept-mapping activity, and an opportunity to explain the biomechanisms of DNA replication, transcription, and translation. Student reasoning patterns were explored through mixed-method analyses. Results suggested that students must sort mechanistic entities into appropriate mental categories that reflect the nature of MCB mechanisms and that conflation between these categories is common. We also showed how connections between molecular mechanisms and their biological roles are part of building an integrated knowledge network as students develop expertise. We observed differences in the nature of connections between ideas related to different forms of reasoning. Finally, we provide a tentative model for MCB knowledge integration and suggest its implications for undergraduate learning. PMID:26931398

  2. The molecular biology of prostate cancer: current understanding and clinical implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gandhi, Jason; Afridi, Adil; Vatsia, Sohrab; Joshi, Gargi; Joshi, Gunjan; Kaplan, Steven A; Smith, Noel L; Khan, Sardar Ali

    2017-12-27

    With continuous progress over the past few decades in understanding diagnosis, treatment, and genetics, much has been learned about the prostate cancer-diagnosed genome. A comprehensive MEDLINE® and Google scholar literature search was conducted using keyword variations relating to the genetics of prostate cancer such as chromosomal alterations, androgen receptor, castration-resistant, inheritance, polymorphisms, oncogenes, metastasis, biomarkers, and immunotherapy. Traditionally, androgen receptors (AR) have been the focus of research. Recently, identification of recurrent chromosomal alterations that lead to either multiplication of regions (gain-of-function) or deletion of regions (loss-of-function) has opened the door to greater genetic accessibility. These chromosomal aberrations lead to variation in copy number and gene expression. Some of these chromosomal alterations are inherited, while others undergo somatic mutations during disease progression. Inherited gene mutations that make one susceptible to prostate cancer have been identified with familial-linked studies. Somatic genes that progress tumorigenesis have also been identified. Research on the molecular biology of prostate cancer has characterized these genes into tumor suppressor genes or oncogenes. Additionally, genome-wide assay studies have identified many high-risk single-nucleotide polymorphisms recurrent throughout the prostate cancer-diagnosed genome. Castration-resistant prostate cancer is the most aggressive form of prostate cancer, and its research has elucidated many types of mutations associated with AR itself, including enhanced expression and amplification, point mutations, and alternative splicing. Understanding the molecular biology of prostate cancer has permitted more accurate identification using advanced biomarkers and therapy for aggressive forms using immunotherapy. An age-related disease, prostate cancer commands profound attention. With increasing life expectancy and the

  3. Tensegrity I. Cell structure and hierarchical systems biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ingber, Donald E.

    2003-01-01

    In 1993, a Commentary in this journal described how a simple mechanical model of cell structure based on tensegrity architecture can help to explain how cell shape, movement and cytoskeletal mechanics are controlled, as well as how cells sense and respond to mechanical forces (J. Cell Sci. 104, 613-627). The cellular tensegrity model can now be revisited and placed in context of new advances in our understanding of cell structure, biological networks and mechanoregulation that have been made over the past decade. Recent work provides strong evidence to support the use of tensegrity by cells, and mathematical formulations of the model predict many aspects of cell behavior. In addition, development of the tensegrity theory and its translation into mathematical terms are beginning to allow us to define the relationship between mechanics and biochemistry at the molecular level and to attack the larger problem of biological complexity. Part I of this two-part article covers the evidence for cellular tensegrity at the molecular level and describes how this building system may provide a structural basis for the hierarchical organization of living systems--from molecule to organism. Part II, which focuses on how these structural networks influence information processing networks, appears in the next issue.

  4. Aspergilli: Models for systems biology in filamentous fungi

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Brandl, Julian; Andersen, Mikael Rørdam

    2017-01-01

    Aspergillus is a diverse genus of filamentous fungi including common house hold mold as well as human pathogens. More than 350 species are currently part of this genus and all their genomes are soon to be sequenced. The availability of this vast amount of data will allow for more in-depth underst......Aspergillus is a diverse genus of filamentous fungi including common house hold mold as well as human pathogens. More than 350 species are currently part of this genus and all their genomes are soon to be sequenced. The availability of this vast amount of data will allow for more in......-depth understanding of genetic traits governing desirable properties like enzyme production as well as the pathogenic potency of the organisms. In this review we give an overview of the systems biology research conducted in Aspergilli. This research has covered omics technologies like genomics, transcriptomics...... and proteomics where outstanding contributions are highlighted. From past developments it becomes apparent that CRISPR technology will speed up genetic research in the Aspergillus field. This speed up will allow for an increase in systems biology targeted research by accelerating data generation. The increase...

  5. A conceptual review on systems biology in health and diseases: from biological networks to modern therapeutics

    OpenAIRE

    Somvanshi, Pramod Rajaram; Venkatesh, K. V.

    2013-01-01

    Human physiology is an ensemble of various biological processes spanning from intracellular molecular interactions to the whole body phenotypic response. Systems biology endures to decipher these multi-scale biological networks and bridge the link between genotype to phenotype. The structure and dynamic properties of these networks are responsible for controlling and deciding the phenotypic state of a cell. Several cells and various tissues coordinate together to generate an organ level respo...

  6. A review of imaging techniques for systems biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Po Ming J

    2008-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract This paper presents a review of imaging techniques and of their utility in system biology. During the last decade systems biology has matured into a distinct field and imaging has been increasingly used to enable the interplay of experimental and theoretical biology. In this review, we describe and compare the roles of microscopy, ultrasound, CT (Computed Tomography, MRI (Magnetic Resonance Imaging, PET (Positron Emission Tomography, and molecular probes such as quantum dots and nanoshells in systems biology. As a unified application area among these different imaging techniques, examples in cancer targeting are highlighted.

  7. Morphogenesis and pattern formation in biological systems experiments and models

    CERN Document Server

    Noji, Sumihare; Ueno, Naoto; Maini, Philip

    2003-01-01

    A central goal of current biology is to decode the mechanisms that underlie the processes of morphogenesis and pattern formation. Concerned with the analysis of those phenomena, this book covers a broad range of research fields, including developmental biology, molecular biology, plant morphogenesis, ecology, epidemiology, medicine, paleontology, evolutionary biology, mathematical biology, and computational biology. In Morphogenesis and Pattern Formation in Biological Systems: Experiments and Models, experimental and theoretical aspects of biology are integrated for the construction and investigation of models of complex processes. This collection of articles on the latest advances by leading researchers not only brings together work from a wide spectrum of disciplines, but also provides a stepping-stone to the creation of new areas of discovery.

  8. Biological oceanography of the red oceanic system

    Science.gov (United States)

    Theil, Hjalmar; Weikert, Horst

    1. In 1977, 1979 and 1980-81, investigations were carried out which aimed at evaluating the potential risks from mining metalliferous muds precipating in the Atlantis II Deep of the central Red Sea. This environmental research was initiated by the Saudi Sudanese Red Sea Joint Commission in order to avoid any danger for the Red Sea ecosystem. The broad environmental research programme coherent studies in physical, chemical, biological, and geological oceanography as well as toxicological investigations in the oceanic and in reef zones. We summarise the results from our biological fiels studies in the open sea. 2. The biological investigations were concentrated on the area of the Atlantis II Deep. Benthos was sampled between 700-2000m. For comparison a few samples were also taken further north in the central Red Sea, and to east and west along the flanking deep terraces (500-1000m). Plankton studies covered the total water column above the Deep, and were extended along the axial through to north and south. 3. Benthos sampling was carried out using a heavy closing trawl, a large box grab (box size 50 × 50 cm), Van Veen grabs and traps; photographic surveys were made a phototrap and a photosled. Community respiration was measured with a ship-board method using grab subsamples. Nutrient concentrations, seston and phytoplankton standing stocks as well as in situ primary production were determined from hydrocast samples. Data on zooplankton and micronekton composition and standing stock were obtained from samples collected using different multiple opening-and-closing nets equipped with 100 μm, 300 μm, and 1000 μm mesh sizes. Daily and ontogenetical vertical migration patterns were studied by comparisons of data from midday and midnight tows. 4. Throughout the whole area the sediment is a pteropod ooze containing low contentrations of organic matter; measured organic carbon and nitrogen contents were 0.5 and 0.05% respectively, and chloroplastic pigment equivalents

  9. Evolutionary systems biology: what it is and why it matters.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Soyer, Orkun S; O'Malley, Maureen A

    2013-08-01

    Evolutionary systems biology (ESB) is a rapidly growing integrative approach that has the core aim of generating mechanistic and evolutionary understanding of genotype-phenotype relationships at multiple levels. ESB's more specific objectives include extending knowledge gained from model organisms to non-model organisms, predicting the effects of mutations, and defining the core network structures and dynamics that have evolved to cause particular intracellular and intercellular responses. By combining mathematical, molecular, and cellular approaches to evolution, ESB adds new insights and methods to the modern evolutionary synthesis, and offers ways in which to enhance its explanatory and predictive capacities. This combination of prediction and explanation marks ESB out as a research manifesto that goes further than its two contributing fields. Here, we summarize ESB via an analysis of characteristic research examples and exploratory questions, while also making a case for why these integrative efforts are worth pursuing. © 2013 WILEY Periodicals, Inc.

  10. Linking Microbiota to Human Diseases: A Systems Biology Perspective.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Hao; Tremaroli, Valentina; Bäckhed, Fredrik

    2015-12-01

    The human gut microbiota encompasses a densely populated ecosystem that provides essential functions for host development, immune maturation, and metabolism. Alterations to the gut microbiota have been observed in numerous diseases, including human metabolic diseases such as obesity, type 2 diabetes (T2D), and irritable bowel syndrome, and some animal experiments have suggested causality. However, few studies have validated causality in humans and the underlying mechanisms remain largely to be elucidated. We discuss how systems biology approaches combined with new experimental technologies may disentangle some of the mechanistic details in the complex interactions of diet, microbiota, and host metabolism and may provide testable hypotheses for advancing our current understanding of human-microbiota interaction. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. Systems biology applied to vaccine and immunotherapy development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Marincola Francesco M

    2011-09-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Immunotherapies, including vaccines, represent a potent tool to prevent or contain disease with high morbidity or mortality such as infections and cancer. However, despite their widespread use, we still have a limited understanding of the mechanisms underlying the induction of protective immune responses. Immunity is made of a multifaceted set of integrated responses involving a dynamic interaction of thousands of molecules; among those is a growing appreciation for the role the innate immunity (i.e. pathogen recognition receptors - PRRs plays in determining the nature and duration (immune memory of adaptive T and B cell immunity. The complex network of interactions between immune manipulation of the host (immunotherapy on one side and innate and adaptive responses on the other might be fully understood only employing the global level of investigation provided by systems biology. In this framework, the advancement of high-throughput technologies, together with the extensive identification of new genes, proteins and other biomolecules in the "omics" era, facilitate large-scale biological measurements. Moreover, recent development of new computational tools enables the comprehensive and quantitative analysis of the interactions between all of the components of immunity over time. Here, we review recent progress in using systems biology to study and evaluate immunotherapy and vaccine strategies for infectious and neoplastic diseases. Multi-parametric data provide novel and often unsuspected mechanistic insights while enabling the identification of common immune signatures relevant to human investigation such as the prediction of immune responsiveness that could lead to the improvement of the design of future immunotherapy trials. Thus, the paradigm switch from "empirical" to "knowledge-based" conduct of medicine and immunotherapy in particular, leading to patient-tailored treatment.

  12. Network science of biological systems at different scales: A review

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gosak, Marko; Markovič, Rene; Dolenšek, Jurij; Slak Rupnik, Marjan; Marhl, Marko; Stožer, Andraž; Perc, Matjaž

    2018-03-01

    Network science is today established as a backbone for description of structure and function of various physical, chemical, biological, technological, and social systems. Here we review recent advances in the study of complex biological systems that were inspired and enabled by methods of network science. First, we present

  13. Stress Biology and Aging Mechanisms: Toward Understanding the Deep Connection Between Adaptation to Stress and Longevity

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    The rate of biological aging is modulated in part by genes interacting with stressor exposures. Basic research has shown that exposure to short-term stress can strengthen cellular responses to stress (“hormetic stress”). Hormetic stress promotes longevity in part through enhanced activity of molecular chaperones and other defense mechanisms. In contrast, prolonged exposure to stress can overwhelm compensatory responses (“toxic stress”) and shorten lifespan. One key question is whether the stressors that are well understood in basic models of aging can help us understand psychological stressors and human health. The psychological stress response promotes regulatory changes important in aging (e.g., increases in stress hormones, inflammation, oxidative stress, insulin). The negative effects of severe stress are well documented in humans. Potential positive effects of acute stress (stress resistance) are less studied, especially at the cellular level. Can stress resistance slow the rate of aging in humans, as it does in model organisms? If so, how can we promote stress resistance in humans? We urge a new research agenda embracing the continuum from cellular stress to psychological stress, using basic and human research in tandem. This will require interdisciplinary novel approaches that hold much promise for understanding and intervening in human chronic disease. PMID:24833580

  14. Stress biology and aging mechanisms: toward understanding the deep connection between adaptation to stress and longevity.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Epel, Elissa S; Lithgow, Gordon J

    2014-06-01

    The rate of biological aging is modulated in part by genes interacting with stressor exposures. Basic research has shown that exposure to short-term stress can strengthen cellular responses to stress ("hormetic stress"). Hormetic stress promotes longevity in part through enhanced activity of molecular chaperones and other defense mechanisms. In contrast, prolonged exposure to stress can overwhelm compensatory responses ("toxic stress") and shorten lifespan. One key question is whether the stressors that are well understood in basic models of aging can help us understand psychological stressors and human health. The psychological stress response promotes regulatory changes important in aging (e.g., increases in stress hormones, inflammation, oxidative stress, insulin). The negative effects of severe stress are well documented in humans. Potential positive effects of acute stress (stress resistance) are less studied, especially at the cellular level. Can stress resistance slow the rate of aging in humans, as it does in model organisms? If so, how can we promote stress resistance in humans? We urge a new research agenda embracing the continuum from cellular stress to psychological stress, using basic and human research in tandem. This will require interdisciplinary novel approaches that hold much promise for understanding and intervening in human chronic disease. © The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Gerontological Society of America. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  15. Multiple Representations in Modeling Strategies for the Development of Systems Thinking in Biology Education

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Verhoeff, R.P.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/165575581; Boersma, K.T.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/073043141; Waarlo, A.J.|info:eu-repo/dai/nl/074372246

    2013-01-01

    For biological researchers, systems thinking is a basic conceptual framework, and many educationalists consider systems thinking as a metacognitive skill that enables students to understand and cope with the new scientific advancements that reach our society. With this in mind, we investigated the

  16. Complex systems of biological interest stability under ionising radiations

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Maclot, Sylvain

    2014-01-01

    This PhD work presents the study of stability of molecular systems of biological interest in the gas phase after interaction with ionising radiations. The use of ionising radiation can probe the physical chemistry of complex systems at the molecular scale and thus consider their intrinsic properties. Beyond the fundamental aspect, this work is part of the overall understanding of radiation effects on living organisms and in particular the use of ionizing radiation in radiotherapy. Specifically, this study focused on the use of low-energy multiply charged ions (tens of keV) provided by the GANIL (Caen), which includes most of the experiments presented. In addition, experiments using VUV photons were also conducted at synchrotron ELETTRA (Trieste, Italy). The bio-molecular systems studied are amino acids and nucleic acid constituents. Using an experimental crossed beams device allows interaction between biomolecules and ionising radiation leads mainly to the ionization and fragmentation of the system. The study of its relaxation dynamics is by time-of-flight mass spectrometry coupled to a coincidences measurements method. It is shown that an approach combining experiment and theory allows a detailed study of the fragmentation dynamics of complex systems. The results indicate that fragmentation is generally governed by the Coulomb repulsion but the intramolecular rearrangements involve specific relaxation mechanisms. (author) [fr

  17. Understanding Biological Roles of Venoms Among the Caenophidia: The Importance of Rear-Fanged Snakes.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mackessy, Stephen P; Saviola, Anthony J

    2016-11-01

    Snake venoms represent an adaptive trophic response to the challenges confronting a limbless predator for overcoming combative prey, and this chemical means of subduing prey shows several dominant phenotypes. Many front-fanged snakes, particularly vipers, feed on various vertebrate and invertebrate prey species, and some of their venom components (e.g., metalloproteinases, cobratoxin) appear to have been selected for "broad-brush" incapacitation of different prey taxa. Using proteomic and genomic techniques, the compositional diversity of front-fanged snakes is becoming well characterized; however, this is not the case for most rear-fanged colubroid snakes. Because these species consume a high diversity of prey, and because venoms are primarily a trophic adaptation, important clues for understanding specific selective pressures favoring venom component composition will be found among rear-fanged snake venoms. Rear-fanged snakes typically (but not always) produce venoms with lower complexity than front-fanged snakes, and there are even fewer dominant (and, arguably, biologically most relevant) venom protein families. We have demonstrated taxon-specific toxic effects, where lizards and birds show high susceptibility while mammals are largely unaffected, for both Old World and New World rear-fanged snakes, strongly indicating a causal link between toxin evolution and prey preference. New data are presented on myotoxin a, showing that the extremely rapid paralysis induced by this rattlesnake toxin is specific for rodents, and that myotoxin a is ineffectual against lizards. Relatively few rear-fanged snake venoms have been characterized, and basic natural history data are largely lacking, but directed sampling of specialized species indicates that novel compounds are likely among these specialists, particularly among those species feeding on invertebrate prey such as scorpions and centipedes. Because many of the more than 2200 species of colubroid snakes are rear

  18. The Relationship between Biology Teachers' Understanding of the Nature of Science and the Understanding and Acceptance of the Theory of Evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Cofré, Hernán; Cuevas, Emilia; Becerra, Beatriz

    2017-01-01

    Despite the importance of the theory of evolution (TE) to scientific knowledge, a number of misconceptions continue to be found among biology teachers. In this context, the first objective of this study was to identify the impact of professional development programme (PDP) on teachers' understanding of nature of science (NOS) and evolution and on…

  19. Optical Biosensors to Explore Biological Systems

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Palanco, Marta Espina; Mogensen, Klaus Bo; Andersen, Nils H. Skovgaard

    2016-01-01

    protein may be used as an efficient sensor in an organic environment via a biomimetic membrane model. The combination of both biomimetic membranes and protein membranes as a signal transduction medium has interesting applications in biology and medicine. It is crucial that the matrix where a protein...

  20. A Systems Approach to Biology (SAB).

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bush, Kenneth H.; And Others

    This pupil's study guide is intended to be used with audio-taped biology modules. Each of the units (on laboratory techniques, plant and animal diversity, chemistry, cells, energy, microbiology, genetics, and development) contains an abstract providing an overview of the unit, the rationale and performance objectives for each module, questions to…

  1. The Effectiveness of an Online Curriculum on High School Students' Understanding of Biological Evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsteller, Robert B.; Bodzin, Alec M.

    2015-01-01

    An online curriculum about biological evolution was designed to promote increased student content knowledge and evidentiary reasoning. A feasibility study was conducted with 77 rural high school biology students who learned with the online biological evolution unit. Data sources included the Biological Evolution Assessment Measure (BEAM), an…

  2. Yeast systems biology to unravel the network of life

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Mustacchi, Roberta; Hohmann, S; Nielsen, Jens

    2006-01-01

    Systems biology focuses on obtaining a quantitative description of complete biological systems, even complete cellular function. In this way, it will be possible to perform computer-guided design of novel drugs, advanced therapies for treatment of complex diseases, and to perform in silico design....... Furthermore, it serves as an industrial workhorse for production of a wide range of chemicals and pharmaceuticals. Systems biology involves the combination of novel experimental techniques from different disciplines as well as functional genomics, bioinformatics and mathematical modelling, and hence no single...... laboratory has access to all the necessary competences. For this reason the Yeast Systems Biology Network (YSBN) has been established. YSBN will coordinate research efforts, in yeast systems biology and, through the recently obtained EU funding for a Coordination Action, it will be possible to set...

  3. 'Systems biology' in human exercise physiology: is it something different from integrative physiology?

    Science.gov (United States)

    Greenhaff, Paul L; Hargreaves, Mark

    2011-03-01

    On first impression the 'whole-istic approach to understanding biology' that has been used to describe Systems Biology bears a striking resemblance to what many of us know as Integrative Physiology. However, closer scrutiny reveals that at the present time Systems Biology is rooted in processes operating at a cellular level ('the study of an organism, viewed as an integrated and interacting network of genes, proteins and biochemical reactions which give rise to life ultimately responsible for an organism's form and functions'; http://www.systemsbiology.org), and appears to have evolved as a direct result of advances in high throughput molecular biology platforms (and associated bioinformatics) over the past decade. The Systems Biology approach is in many ways laudable, but it will be immediately apparent to most exercise or integrative physiologists that the challenge of understanding the whole-animal response to exercise as a network of integrated and interacting genes, proteins and biochemical reactions is unlikely to be realized in the near future. This short review will attempt to clarify conceptual inconsistencies between the fields of Systems Biology and Integrative Physiology in the context of exercise science, and will attempt to identify the challenges to whole-body physiologists wishing to harness the tools of Systems Biology.

  4. How Information Visualization Systems Change Users' Understandings of Complex Data

    Science.gov (United States)

    Allendoerfer, Kenneth Robert

    2009-01-01

    User-centered evaluations of information systems often focus on the usability of the system rather its usefulness. This study examined how a using an interactive knowledge-domain visualization (KDV) system affected users' understanding of a domain. Interactive KDVs allow users to create graphical representations of domains that depict important…

  5. Putting the Mind in the Brain: Promoting an Appreciation of the Biological Basis to Understanding Human Behavior

    Science.gov (United States)

    Neumann, David L.

    2010-01-01

    A surprising number of students in psychology, behavioral science, and related social science classes fail to appreciate the importance of biological mechanisms to understanding behavior. To help teachers promote this understanding, this paper outlines six sources of evidence. These are (a) phylogenetic, (b) genetic/developmental, (c) clinical,…

  6. Review and application of group theory to molecular systems biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Rietman Edward A

    2011-06-01

    Full Text Available Abstract In this paper we provide a review of selected mathematical ideas that can help us better understand the boundary between living and non-living systems. We focus on group theory and abstract algebra applied to molecular systems biology. Throughout this paper we briefly describe possible open problems. In connection with the genetic code we propose that it may be possible to use perturbation theory to explore the adjacent possibilities in the 64-dimensional space-time manifold of the evolving genome. With regards to algebraic graph theory, there are several minor open problems we discuss. In relation to network dynamics and groupoid formalism we suggest that the network graph might not be the main focus for understanding the phenotype but rather the phase space of the network dynamics. We show a simple case of a C6 network and its phase space network. We envision that the molecular network of a cell is actually a complex network of hypercycles and feedback circuits that could be better represented in a higher-dimensional space. We conjecture that targeting nodes in the molecular network that have key roles in the phase space, as revealed by analysis of the automorphism decomposition, might be a better way to drug discovery and treatment of cancer.

  7. Review and application of group theory to molecular systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rietman, Edward A; Karp, Robert L; Tuszynski, Jack A

    2011-06-22

    In this paper we provide a review of selected mathematical ideas that can help us better understand the boundary between living and non-living systems. We focus on group theory and abstract algebra applied to molecular systems biology. Throughout this paper we briefly describe possible open problems. In connection with the genetic code we propose that it may be possible to use perturbation theory to explore the adjacent possibilities in the 64-dimensional space-time manifold of the evolving genome. With regards to algebraic graph theory, there are several minor open problems we discuss. In relation to network dynamics and groupoid formalism we suggest that the network graph might not be the main focus for understanding the phenotype but rather the phase space of the network dynamics. We show a simple case of a C6 network and its phase space network. We envision that the molecular network of a cell is actually a complex network of hypercycles and feedback circuits that could be better represented in a higher-dimensional space. We conjecture that targeting nodes in the molecular network that have key roles in the phase space, as revealed by analysis of the automorphism decomposition, might be a better way to drug discovery and treatment of cancer.

  8. Modeling and simulation of biological systems using SPICE language

    Science.gov (United States)

    Lallement, Christophe; Haiech, Jacques

    2017-01-01

    The article deals with BB-SPICE (SPICE for Biochemical and Biological Systems), an extension of the famous Simulation Program with Integrated Circuit Emphasis (SPICE). BB-SPICE environment is composed of three modules: a new textual and compact description formalism for biological systems, a converter that handles this description and generates the SPICE netlist of the equivalent electronic circuit and NGSPICE which is an open-source SPICE simulator. In addition, the environment provides back and forth interfaces with SBML (System Biology Markup Language), a very common description language used in systems biology. BB-SPICE has been developed in order to bridge the gap between the simulation of biological systems on the one hand and electronics circuits on the other hand. Thus, it is suitable for applications at the interface between both domains, such as development of design tools for synthetic biology and for the virtual prototyping of biosensors and lab-on-chip. Simulation results obtained with BB-SPICE and COPASI (an open-source software used for the simulation of biochemical systems) have been compared on a benchmark of models commonly used in systems biology. Results are in accordance from a quantitative viewpoint but BB-SPICE outclasses COPASI by 1 to 3 orders of magnitude regarding the computation time. Moreover, as our software is based on NGSPICE, it could take profit of incoming updates such as the GPU implementation, of the coupling with powerful analysis and verification tools or of the integration in design automation tools (synthetic biology). PMID:28787027

  9. Systems Biology Perspectives on Minimal and Simpler Cells

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xavier, Joana C.; Patil, Kiran Raosaheb

    2014-01-01

    SUMMARY The concept of the minimal cell has fascinated scientists for a long time, from both fundamental and applied points of view. This broad concept encompasses extreme reductions of genomes, the last universal common ancestor (LUCA), the creation of semiartificial cells, and the design of protocells and chassis cells. Here we review these different areas of research and identify common and complementary aspects of each one. We focus on systems biology, a discipline that is greatly facilitating the classical top-down and bottom-up approaches toward minimal cells. In addition, we also review the so-called middle-out approach and its contributions to the field with mathematical and computational models. Owing to the advances in genomics technologies, much of the work in this area has been centered on minimal genomes, or rather minimal gene sets, required to sustain life. Nevertheless, a fundamental expansion has been taking place in the last few years wherein the minimal gene set is viewed as a backbone of a more complex system. Complementing genomics, progress is being made in understanding the system-wide properties at the levels of the transcriptome, proteome, and metabolome. Network modeling approaches are enabling the integration of these different omics data sets toward an understanding of the complex molecular pathways connecting genotype to phenotype. We review key concepts central to the mapping and modeling of this complexity, which is at the heart of research on minimal cells. Finally, we discuss the distinction between minimizing the number of cellular components and minimizing cellular complexity, toward an improved understanding and utilization of minimal and simpler cells. PMID:25184563

  10. [From bioinformatics to systems biology: account of the 12th international conference on intelligent systems in molecular biology].

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ivakhno, S S

    2004-01-01

    The paper reviews the 12th International Conference on Intelligent Systems for Molecular Biology/Third European Conference on Computational Biology 2004 that was held in Glasgow, UK, during July 31-August 4. A number of talks, papers and software demos from the conference in bioinformatics, genomics, proteomics, transcriptomics and systems biology are described. Recent applications of liquid chromatography - tandem mass spectrometry, comparative genomics and DNA microarrays are given along with the discussion of bioinformatics curricular in higher education.

  11. Network biology: Describing biological systems by complex networks. Comment on "Network science of biological systems at different scales: A review" by M. Gosak et al.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Jalili, Mahdi

    2018-03-01

    I enjoyed reading Gosak et al. review on analysing biological systems from network science perspective [1]. Network science, first started within Physics community, is now a mature multidisciplinary field of science with many applications ranging from Ecology to biology, medicine, social sciences, engineering and computer science. Gosak et al. discussed how biological systems can be modelled and described by complex network theory which is an important application of network science. Although there has been considerable progress in network biology over the past two decades, this is just the beginning and network science has a great deal to offer to biology and medical sciences.

  12. Synthetic biology and regulatory networks: where metabolic systems biology meets control engineering

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    He, F.; Murabito, E.; Westerhoff, H.V.

    2016-01-01

    Metabolic pathways can be engineered to maximize the synthesis of various products of interest. With the advent of computational systems biology, this endeavour is usually carried out throughin silicotheoretical studies with the aim to guide and complement furtherin vitroandin vivoexperimental

  13. Biological Detection System Technologies Technology and Industrial Base Study. A Primer on Biological Detection Technologies

    National Research Council Canada - National Science Library

    2001-01-01

    .... and Canadian military personnel. In light of these concerns both defense departments have increased efforts to develop and field biological agent detection systems to help protect their military forces and fixed assets...

  14. Scaling for Dynamical Systems in Biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ledder, Glenn

    2017-11-01

    Asymptotic methods can greatly simplify the analysis of all but the simplest mathematical models and should therefore be commonplace in such biological areas as ecology and epidemiology. One essential difficulty that limits their use is that they can only be applied to a suitably scaled dimensionless version of the original dimensional model. Many books discuss nondimensionalization, but with little attention given to the problem of choosing the right scales and dimensionless parameters. In this paper, we illustrate the value of using asymptotics on a properly scaled dimensionless model, develop a set of guidelines that can be used to make good scaling choices, and offer advice for teaching these topics in differential equations or mathematical biology courses.

  15. Magnetic biosensor system to detect biological targets

    KAUST Repository

    Li, Fuquan

    2012-09-01

    Magneto-resistive sensors in combination with magnetic beads provide sensing platforms, which are small in size and highly sensitive. These platforms can be fully integrated with microchannels and electronics to enable devices capable of performing complex tasks. Commonly, a sandwich method is used that requires a specific coating of the sensor\\'s surface to immobilize magnetic beads and biological targets on top of the sensor. This paper concerns a micro device to detect biological targets using magnetic concentration, magnetic as well as mechanical trapping and magnetic sensing. Target detection is based on the size difference between bare magnetic beads and magnetic beads with targets attached. This method remedies the need for a coating layer and reduces the number of steps required to run an experiment. © 2012 IEEE.

  16. Spies and Bloggers: New Synthetic Biology Tools to Understand Microbial Processes in Soils and Sediments

    Science.gov (United States)

    Masiello, C. A.; Silberg, J. J.; Cheng, H. Y.; Del Valle, I.; Fulk, E. M.; Gao, X.; Bennett, G. N.

    2017-12-01

    Microbes can be programmed through synthetic biology to report on their behavior, informing researchers when their environment has triggered changes in their gene expression (e.g. in response to shifts in O2 or H2O), or when they have participated in a specific step of an elemental cycle (e.g. denitrification). This use of synthetic biology has the potential to significantly improve our understanding of microbes' roles in elemental and water cycling, because it allows reporting on the environment from the perspective of a microbe, matching the measurement scale exactly to the scale that a microbe experiences. However, synthetic microbes have not yet seen wide use in soil and sediment laboratory experiments because synthetic organisms typically report by fluorescing, making their signals difficult to detect outside the petri dish. We are developing a new suite of microbial programs that report instead by releasing easily-detected gases, allowing the real-time, noninvasive monitoring of behaviors in sediments and soils. Microbial biosensors can, in theory, be programmed to detect dynamic processes that contribute to a wide range of geobiological processes, including C cycling (biofilm production, methanogenesis, and synthesis of extracellular enzymes that degrade organic matter), N cycling (expression of enzymes that underlie different steps of the N cycle) and potentially S cycling. We will provide an overview of the potential uses of gas-reporting biosensors in soil and sediment lab experiments, and will report the development of the systematics of these sensors. Successful development of gas biosensors for laboratory use will require addressing issues including: engineering the intensity and selectivity of microbial gas production to maximize the signal to noise ratio; normalizing the gas reporter signal to cell population size, managing gas diffusion effects on signal shape; and developing multiple gases that can be used in parallel.

  17. Sign language: its history and contribution to the understanding of the biological nature of language.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ruben, Robert J

    2005-05-01

    The development of conceptualization of a biological basis of language during the 20th century has come about, in part, through the appreciation of the central nervous system's ability to utilize varied sensory inputs, and particularly vision, to develop language. Sign language has been a part of the linguistic experience from prehistory to the present day. Data suggest that human language may have originated as a visual language and became primarily auditory with the later development of our voice/speech tract. Sign language may be categorized into two types. The first is used by individuals who have auditory/oral language and the signs are used for special situations, such as communication in a monastery in which there is a vow of silence. The second is used by those who do not have access to auditory/oral language, namely the deaf. The history of the two forms of sign language and the development of the concept of the biological basis of language are reviewed from the fourth century BC to the present day. Sign languages of the deaf have been recognized since at least the fourth century BC. The codification of a monastic sign language occurred in the seventh to eighth centuries AD. Probable synergy between the two forms of sign language occurred in the 16th century. Among other developments, the Abbey de L'Epée introduced, in the 18th century, an oral syntax, French, into a sign language based upon indigenous signs of the deaf and newly created signs. During the 19th century, the concept of a "critical" period for the acquisition of language developed; this was an important stimulus for the exploration of the biological basis of language. The introduction of techniques, e.g. evoked potentials and functional MRI, during the 20th century allowed study of the brain functions associated with language.

  18. Redefining plant systems biology: from cell to ecosystem.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Keurentjes, Joost J B; Angenent, Gerco C; Dicke, Marcel; Dos Santos, Vítor A P Martins; Molenaar, Jaap; van der Putten, Wim H; de Ruiter, Peter C; Struik, Paul C; Thomma, Bart P H J

    2011-04-01

    Molecular biologists typically restrict systems biology to cellular levels. By contrast, ecologists define biological systems as communities of interacting individuals at different trophic levels that process energy, nutrient and information flows. Modern plant breeding needs to increase agricultural productivity while decreasing the ecological footprint. This requires a holistic systems biology approach that couples different aggregation levels while considering the variables that affect these biological systems from cell to community. The challenge is to generate accurate experimental data that can be used together with modelling concepts and techniques that allow experimentally verifying in silico predictions. The coupling of aggregation levels in plant sciences, termed Integral Quantification of Biological Organization (IQ(BiO)), might enhance our abilities to generate new desired plant phenotypes. Copyright © 2010 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Integrative systems and synthetic biology of cell-matrix adhesion sites.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zamir, Eli

    2016-09-02

    The complexity of cell-matrix adhesion convolves its roles in the development and functioning of multicellular organisms and their evolutionary tinkering. Cell-matrix adhesion is mediated by sites along the plasma membrane that anchor the actin cytoskeleton to the matrix via a large number of proteins, collectively called the integrin adhesome. Fundamental challenges for understanding how cell-matrix adhesion sites assemble and function arise from their multi-functionality, rapid dynamics, large number of components and molecular diversity. Systems biology faces these challenges in its strive to understand how the integrin adhesome gives rise to functional adhesion sites. Synthetic biology enables engineering intracellular modules and circuits with properties of interest. In this review I discuss some of the fundamental questions in systems biology of cell-matrix adhesion and how synthetic biology can help addressing them.

  20. 'Integrative Physiology 2.0': Integration of systems biology into physiology and its application to cardiovascular homeostasis

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    D.W.D. Kuster (Diederik); D. Merkus (Daphne); J. van der Velden (Jolanda); A.J.M. Verhoeven (Adrie); D.J.G.M. Duncker (Dirk)

    2011-01-01

    textabstractSince the completion of the Human Genome Project and the advent of the large scaled unbiased '-omics' techniques, the field of systems biology has emerged. Systems biology aims to move away from the traditional reductionist molecular approach, which focused on understanding the role of

  1. Understanding human thiol dioxygenase enzymes: structure to function, and biology to pathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sarkar, Bibekananda; Kulharia, Mahesh; Mantha, Anil K

    2017-04-01

    Amino acid metabolism is a significant metabolic activity in humans, especially of sulphur-containing amino acids, methionine and cysteine (Cys). Cys is cytotoxic and neurotoxic in nature; hence, mammalian cells maintain a constant intracellular level of Cys. Metabolism of Cys is mainly regulated by two thiol dioxygenases: cysteine dioxygenase (CDO) and 2-aminoethanethiol dioxygenase (ADO). CDO and ADO are the only human thiol dioxygenases reported with a role in Cys metabolism and localized to mitochondria. This metabolic pathway is important in various human disorders, as it is responsible for the synthesis of antioxidant glutathione and is also for the synthesis of hypotaurine and taurine. CDO is the most extensively studied protein, whose high-resolution crystallographic structures have been solved. As compared to CDO, ADO is less studied, even though it has a key role in cysteamine metabolism. To further understand ADO's structure and function, the three-dimensional structures have been predicted from I-TASSER and SWISS-MODEL servers and validated with PROCHECK software. Structural superimposition approach using iPBA web server further confirmed near-identical structures (including active sites) for the predicted protein models of ADO as compared to CDO. In addition, protein-protein interaction and their association in patho-physiology are crucial in understanding protein functions. Both ADO and CDO interacting partner profiles have been presented using STRING database. In this study, we have predicted a 3D model structure for ADO and summarized the biological roles and the pathological consequences which are associated with the altered expression and functioning of ADO and CDO in case of cancer, neurodegenerative disorders and other human diseases. © 2017 The Authors. International Journal of Experimental Pathology © 2017 International Journal of Experimental Pathology.

  2. Reverse allostasis in biological systems: Minimal conditions and implications.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rezaei-Ghaleh, Nasrollah; Bakhtiari, Davood; Rashidi, Armin

    2017-08-07

    Biological control systems regulate the behavior of biological systems in a constantly changing environment. Homeostasis is the most widely studied outcome of biological control systems. Homeostatic systems maintain the system in its desired state despite variations in system parameters or the externally-determined input rates of their constituents, i.e. they have zero or near zero steady state error. On the other hand, allostatic systems are not resistant against environmental changes and the steady state level of their controlled variables responds positively to the changes in their input rates. Little is known, however, on the existence and frequency of reverse allostatic systems, where the steady state value of the controlled variable correlates negatively with the input rate of that variable. In the present study, we derive the minimal conditions for the existence and local stability of reverse allostatic systems, and demonstrate in examples of metabolic, pharmacological, pathophysiological and ecological systems that the reverse allostasis requirements are relatively non-stringent and may be satisfied in biological systems more commonly than usually thought. The possible existence of reverse allostatic systems in nature and their counter-intuitive implications in physiological systems, drug treatment, ecosystem management, and biological control are explored and testable predictions are made. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  3. Behaviors of tritium in terrestrial biological system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Inomata, Tsuyako

    1983-01-01

    The in vivo behaviors of HTO- 3 H in food chain models in experimental animals were described. Of pregnant mice that had ingested HTO and drinking water alone for 19 days, the total 3 H content in the tissue/wet weight was greater by 20% in fetuses and newborns than in mothers, and the proportion of tissue-bound 3 H was 8-24% in mothers and 3% in fetuses. The mean 3 H concentration in the free water in tissues was about 36% of ingested HTO. When only 3 H foods were ingested for 18 days, the total 3 H content in the tissue/wet weight showed no marked difference among the mother, fetuses and newborns, nor did the bound 3 H level show great differences. With respect to the tissue distribution of 3 H, only the incorporation rate by the mother's brain from HTO was satisfactory, whereas in other organs, the mother, fetuses and newborns showed higher incorporation rates from 3 H foods. The ratio of specific radioactivity of soft tissue 3 H in mothers to HTO in drinking water exceeded 1 only for the spleen, but other tissues showed no biological concentration. Again, no biological concentration was observed with 3 H foods. Environmental HTO did not result in biological concentration of 3 H in mother mice that had ingested 3 H foods, but 3 H was rather diluted. Tissues other than the spleen showed similar values of 3 H ingestion from environmental HTO through all routes. However, the proportion of bound 3 H in the total 3 H in the soft tissue was about 1.4-1.6 times that on ingestion of HTO alone. (Chiba, N.)

  4. Reverse engineering and identification in systems biology: strategies, perspectives and challenges.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Villaverde, Alejandro F; Banga, Julio R

    2014-02-06

    The interplay of mathematical modelling with experiments is one of the central elements in systems biology. The aim of reverse engineering is to infer, analyse and understand, through this interplay, the functional and regulatory mechanisms of biological systems. Reverse engineering is not exclusive of systems biology and has been studied in different areas, such as inverse problem theory, machine learning, nonlinear physics, (bio)chemical kinetics, control theory and optimization, among others. However, it seems that many of these areas have been relatively closed to outsiders. In this contribution, we aim to compare and highlight the different perspectives and contributions from these fields, with emphasis on two key questions: (i) why are reverse engineering problems so hard to solve, and (ii) what methods are available for the particular problems arising from systems biology?

  5. Information theory in systems biology. Part I: Gene regulatory and metabolic networks.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mousavian, Zaynab; Kavousi, Kaveh; Masoudi-Nejad, Ali

    2016-03-01

    "A Mathematical Theory of Communication", was published in 1948 by Claude Shannon to establish a framework that is now known as information theory. In recent decades, information theory has gained much attention in the area of systems biology. The aim of this paper is to provide a systematic review of those contributions that have applied information theory in inferring or understanding of biological systems. Based on the type of system components and the interactions between them, we classify the biological systems into 4 main classes: gene regulatory, metabolic, protein-protein interaction and signaling networks. In the first part of this review, we attempt to introduce most of the existing studies on two types of biological networks, including gene regulatory and metabolic networks, which are founded on the concepts of information theory. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Why are well-educated Muscovites more likely to survive? Understanding the biological pathways

    Science.gov (United States)

    Todd, Megan A.; Shkolnikov, Vladimir M.; Goldman, Noreen

    2016-01-01

    There are large socioeconomic disparities in adult mortality in Russia, although the biological mechanisms are not well understood. With data from the study of Stress, Aging, and Health in Russia (SAHR), we use Gompertz hazard models to assess the relationship between educational attainment and mortality among older adults in Moscow and to evaluate biomarkers associated with inflammation, neuroendocrine function, heart rate variability, and clinical cardiovascular and metabolic risk as potential mediators of that relationship. We do this by assessing the extent to which the addition of biomarker variables into hazard models of mortality attenuates the association between educational attainment and mortality. We find that an additional year of education is associated with about 5% lower risk of age-specific all-cause and cardiovascular mortality. Inflammation biomarkers are best able to account for this relationship, explaining 25% of the education-all-cause mortality association, and 35% of the education-cardiovascular mortality association. Clinical markers perform next best, accounting for 13% and 23% of the relationship between education and all-cause and cardiovascular mortality, respectively. Although heart rate biomarkers are strongly associated with subsequent mortality, they explain very little of the education-mortality link. Neuroendocrine biomarkers fail to account for any portion of the link. These findings suggest that inflammation may be important for understanding mortality disparities by socioeconomic status. PMID:27085072

  7. Learning and Understanding System Stability Using Illustrative Dynamic Texture Examples

    Science.gov (United States)

    Liu, Huaping; Xiao, Wei; Zhao, Hongyan; Sun, Fuchun

    2014-01-01

    System stability is a basic concept in courses on dynamic system analysis and control for undergraduate students with computer science backgrounds. Typically, this was taught using a simple simulation example of an inverted pendulum. Unfortunately, many difficult issues arise in the learning and understanding of the concepts of stability,…

  8. Systems Biology-Based Platforms to Accelerate Research of Emerging Infectious Diseases.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Oh, Soo Jin; Choi, Young Ki; Shin, Ok Sarah

    2018-03-01

    Emerging infectious diseases (EIDs) pose a major threat to public health and security. Given the dynamic nature and significant impact of EIDs, the most effective way to prevent and protect against them is to develop vaccines in advance. Systems biology approaches provide an integrative way to understand the complex immune response to pathogens. They can lead to a greater understanding of EID pathogenesis and facilitate the evaluation of newly developed vaccine-induced immunity in a timely manner. In recent years, advances in high throughput technologies have enabled researchers to successfully apply systems biology methods to analyze immune responses to a variety of pathogens and vaccines. Despite recent advances, computational and biological challenges impede wider application of systems biology approaches. This review highlights recent advances in the fields of systems immunology and vaccinology, and presents ways that systems biology-based platforms can be applied to accelerate a deeper understanding of the molecular mechanisms of immunity against EIDs. © Copyright: Yonsei University College of Medicine 2018.

  9. The common ground of genomics and systems biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    2014-01-01

    The rise of systems biology is intertwined with that of genomics, yet their primordial relationship to one another is ill-defined. We discuss how the growth of genomics provided a critical boost to the popularity of systems biology. We describe the parts of genomics that share common areas of interest with systems biology today in the areas of gene expression, network inference, chromatin state analysis, pathway analysis, personalized medicine, and upcoming areas of synergy as genomics continues to expand its scope across all biomedical fields. PMID:25033072

  10. Noninvasive biological sensor system for detection of drunk driving.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Murata, Kohji; Fujita, Etsunori; Kojima, Shigeyuki; Maeda, Shinitirou; Ogura, Yumi; Kamei, Tsutomu; Tsuji, Toshio; Kaneko, Shigehiko; Yoshizumi, Masao; Suzuki, Nobutaka

    2011-01-01

    Systems capable of monitoring the biological condition of a driver and issuing warnings during instances of drowsiness have recently been studied. Moreover, many researchers have reported that biological signals, such as brain waves, pulsation waves, and heart rate, are different between people who have and have not consumed alcohol. Currently, we are developing a noninvasive system to detect individuals driving under the influence of alcohol by measuring biological signals. We used the frequency time series analysis to attempt to distinguish between normal and intoxicated states of a person as the basis of the sensing system.

  11. Understanding information retrieval systems management, types, and standards

    CERN Document Server

    Bates, Marcia J

    2011-01-01

    In order to be effective for their users, information retrieval (IR) systems should be adapted to the specific needs of particular environments. The huge and growing array of types of information retrieval systems in use today is on display in Understanding Information Retrieval Systems: Management, Types, and Standards, which addresses over 20 types of IR systems. These various system types, in turn, present both technical and management challenges, which are also addressed in this volume. In order to be interoperable in a networked environment, IR systems must be able to use various types of

  12. Physical methods for investigating structural colours in biological systems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Vukusic, P.; Stavenga, D. G.

    2009-01-01

    Many biological systems are known to use structural colour effects to generate aspects of their appearance and visibility. The study of these phenomena has informed an eclectic group of fields ranging, for example, from evolutionary processes in behavioural biology to micro-optical devices in

  13. Biochemical Space: A Framework for Systemic Annotation of Biological Models

    Czech Academy of Sciences Publication Activity Database

    Klement, M.; Děd, T.; Šafránek, D.; Červený, Jan; Müller, Stefan; Steuer, Ralf

    2014-01-01

    Roč. 306, JUL (2014), s. 31-44 ISSN 1571-0661 R&D Projects: GA MŠk(CZ) EE2.3.20.0256 Institutional support: RVO:67179843 Keywords : biological models * model annotation * systems biology * cyanobacteria Subject RIV: EH - Ecology, Behaviour

  14. Review of "Stochastic Modelling for Systems Biology" by Darren Wilkinson

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Bullinger Eric

    2006-12-01

    Full Text Available Abstract "Stochastic Modelling for Systems Biology" by Darren Wilkinson introduces the peculiarities of stochastic modelling in biology. This book is particularly suited to as a textbook or for self-study, and for readers with a theoretical background.

  15. Interdisciplinary problem-solving: emerging modes in integrative systems biology

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    MacLeod, Miles Alexander James; Nersessian, Nancy J.

    2016-01-01

    Integrative systems biology is an emerging field that attempts to integrate computation, applied mathematics, engineering concepts and methods, and biological experimentation in order to model large-scale complex biochemical networks. The field is thus an important contemporary instance of an

  16. GPSR: A Resource for Genomics Proteomics and Systems Biology

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Simple Calculation Programs for Biology Other Methods · PowerPoint Presentation · Slide 6 · Slide 7 · Prediction of B-Cell Epitopes · Slide 9 · Slide 10. Slide 12 · Slide 13 · Limitations of existing web services · GPSR: A Resource for Genomics Proteomics and Systems Biology · Important Information in Manual for Develpers.

  17. Understanding Patterns for System-of-Systems Integration

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Kazman, Rick; Nielsen, Claus Ballegård; Schmid, Klaus

    and interoperation among systems through some form of system integration. Previous work has approached the information system integration challenge in a generic way, not specific to a SoS context, or has provided only a limited range of solutions. This technical report discusses how an IT architect can address...... the SoS integration challenge from an architectural perspective; it also illustrates the breadth of potential solutions to the challenge through a categorization of SoS soft-ware architectural patterns. To demonstrate the practical relevance of this work, the authors instantiate this categorization...

  18. Genome modularity and synthetic biology: Engineering systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mol, Milsee; Kabra, Ritika; Singh, Shailza

    2018-01-01

    Whole genome sequencing projects running in various laboratories around the world has generated immense data. A systematic phylogenetic analysis of this data shows that genome complexity goes on decreasing as it evolves, due to its modular nature. This modularity can be harnessed to minimize the genome further to reduce it with the bare minimum essential genes. A reduced modular genome, can fuel progress in the area of synthetic biology by providing a ready to use plug and play chassis. Advances in gene editing technology such as the use of tailor made synthetic transcription factors will further enhance the availability of synthetic devices to be applied in the fields of environment, agriculture and health. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  19. Systems Biology, Neuroimaging, Neuropsychology, Neuroconnectivity and Traumatic Brain Injury.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bigler, Erin D

    2016-01-01

    The patient who sustains a traumatic brain injury (TBI) typically undergoes neuroimaging studies, usually in the form of computed tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). In most cases the neuroimaging findings are clinically assessed with descriptive statements that provide qualitative information about the presence/absence of visually identifiable abnormalities; though little if any of the potential information in a scan is analyzed in any quantitative manner, except in research settings. Fortunately, major advances have been made, especially during the last decade, in regards to image quantification techniques, especially those that involve automated image analysis methods. This review argues that a systems biology approach to understanding quantitative neuroimaging findings in TBI provides an appropriate framework for better utilizing the information derived from quantitative neuroimaging and its relation with neuropsychological outcome. Different image analysis methods are reviewed in an attempt to integrate quantitative neuroimaging methods with neuropsychological outcome measures and to illustrate how different neuroimaging techniques tap different aspects of TBI-related neuropathology. Likewise, how different neuropathologies may relate to neuropsychological outcome is explored by examining how damage influences brain connectivity and neural networks. Emphasis is placed on the dynamic changes that occur following TBI and how best to capture those pathologies via different neuroimaging methods. However, traditional clinical neuropsychological techniques are not well suited for interpretation based on contemporary and advanced neuroimaging methods and network analyses. Significant improvements need to be made in the cognitive and behavioral assessment of the brain injured individual to better interface with advances in neuroimaging-based network analyses. By viewing both neuroimaging and neuropsychological processes within a systems biology

  20. A Systems Biology Approach to Infectious Disease Research: Innovating the Pathogen-Host Research Paradigm

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Aderem, Alan; Adkins, Joshua N.; Ansong, Charles; Galagan, James; Kaiser, Shari; Korth, Marcus J.; Law, G. L.; McDermott, Jason E.; Proll, Sean; Rosenberger, Carrie; Schoolnik, Gary; Katze, Michael G.

    2011-02-01

    The 20th century was marked by extraordinary advances in our understanding of microbes and infectious disease, but pandemics remain, food and water borne illnesses are frequent, multi-drug resistant microbes are on the rise, and the needed drugs and vaccines have not been developed. The scientific approaches of the past—including the intense focus on individual genes and proteins typical of molecular biology—have not been sufficient to address these challenges. The first decade of the 21st century has seen remarkable innovations in technology and computational methods. These new tools provide nearly comprehensive views of complex biological systems and can provide a correspondingly deeper understanding of pathogen-host interactions. To take full advantage of these innovations, the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases recently initiated the Systems Biology Program for Infectious Disease Research. As participants of the Systems Biology Program we think that the time is at hand to redefine the pathogen-host research paradigm.

  1. Generating Systems Biology Markup Language Models from the Synthetic Biology Open Language.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Roehner, Nicholas; Zhang, Zhen; Nguyen, Tramy; Myers, Chris J

    2015-08-21

    In the context of synthetic biology, model generation is the automated process of constructing biochemical models based on genetic designs. This paper discusses the use cases for model generation in genetic design automation (GDA) software tools and introduces the foundational concepts of standards and model annotation that make this process useful. Finally, this paper presents an implementation of model generation in the GDA software tool iBioSim and provides an example of generating a Systems Biology Markup Language (SBML) model from a design of a 4-input AND sensor written in the Synthetic Biology Open Language (SBOL).

  2. How do biological systems escape 'chaotic' state?

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    B J Rao

    2018-02-13

    Feb 13, 2018 ... forward and feedback regulations among several interdependent components of the system, such that the system stays 'quasi- stable' at the expense of constant energy inputs. Homeostasis is revealed in a chair-shaped graphical relationship between environment or genotype (independent variable) and ...

  3. Towards the Biological Understanding of CTC: Capture Technologies, Definitions and Potential to Create Metastasis

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ana M.C. Barradas

    2013-12-01

    Full Text Available Circulating Tumor Cells (CTC are rare cells originated from tumors that travel into the blood stream, extravasate to different organs of which only a small fraction will develop into metastasis. The presence of CTC enumerated with the CellSearch system is associated with a relative short survival and their continued presence after the first cycles of therapy indicates a futile therapy in patients with metastatic carcinomas. Detailed characterization of CTC holds the promise to enable the choice of the optimal therapy for the individual patients during the course of the disease. The phenotype, physical and biological properties are however not well understood making it difficult to assess the merit of recent technological advancements to improve upon the capture of CTC or to evaluate their metastatic potential. Here we will discuss the recent advances in the classification of CTC captured by the CellSearch system, the implications of their features and numbers. Latest capture platforms are reviewed and placed in the light of technology improvements needed to detect CTC. Physical properties, phenotype, viability and proliferative potential and means to assess their proliferation and metastatic capacity will be summarized and placed in the context of the latest CTC capture platforms.

  4. Systems biology approaches to the study of cardiovascular drugs

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Nikolsky, Y.; Kleemann, R.

    2010-01-01

    Atherogenic lipids and chronic inflammation drive the development of cardiovascular disorders such as atherosclerosis. Many cardiovascular drugs target the liver which is involved in the formation of lipid and inflammatory risk factors. With robust systems biology tools and comprehensive

  5. Insights from Systems Biology in Physiological Studies: Learning from Context

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Pedro Henrique Imenez Silva

    2017-06-01

    Full Text Available Systems biology presents an integrated view of biological systems, focusing on the relations between elements, whether functional or evolutionary, and providing a rich framework for the comprehension of life. At the same time, many low-throughput experimental studies are performed without influence from this integrated view, whilst high-throughput experiments use low-throughput results in their validation and interpretation. We propose an inversion in this logic, and ask which benefits could be obtained from a holistic view coming from high-throughput studies―and systems biology in particular―in interpreting and designing low-throughput experiments. By exploring some key examples from the renal and adrenal physiology, we try to show that network and modularity theory, along with observed patterns of association between elements in a biological system, can have profound effects on our ability to draw meaningful conclusions from experiments.

  6. Comparative systems biology between human and animal models based on next-generation sequencing methods.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Zhao, Yu-Qi; Li, Gong-Hua; Huang, Jing-Fei

    2013-04-01

    Animal models provide myriad benefits to both experimental and clinical research. Unfortunately, in many situations, they fall short of expected results or provide contradictory results. In part, this can be the result of traditional molecular biological approaches that are relatively inefficient in elucidating underlying molecular mechanism. To improve the efficacy of animal models, a technological breakthrough is required. The growing availability and application of the high-throughput methods make systematic comparisons between human and animal models easier to perform. In the present study, we introduce the concept of the comparative systems biology, which we define as "comparisons of biological systems in different states or species used to achieve an integrated understanding of life forms with all their characteristic complexity of interactions at multiple levels". Furthermore, we discuss the applications of RNA-seq and ChIP-seq technologies to comparative systems biology between human and animal models and assess the potential applications for this approach in the future studies.

  7. Bionic models for identification of biological systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Gerget, O. M.

    2017-01-01

    This article proposes a clinical decision support system that processes biomedical data. For this purpose a bionic model has been designed based on neural networks, genetic algorithms and immune systems. The developed system has been tested on data from pregnant women. The paper focuses on the approach to enable selection of control actions that can minimize the risk of adverse outcome. The control actions (hyperparameters of a new type) are further used as an additional input signal. Its values are defined by a hyperparameter optimization method. A software developed with Python is briefly described.

  8. Understanding complex urban systems multidisciplinary approaches to modeling

    CERN Document Server

    Gurr, Jens; Schmidt, J

    2014-01-01

    Understanding Complex Urban Systems takes as its point of departure the insight that the challenges of global urbanization and the complexity of urban systems cannot be understood – let alone ‘managed’ – by sectoral and disciplinary approaches alone. But while there has recently been significant progress in broadening and refining the methodologies for the quantitative modeling of complex urban systems, in deepening the theoretical understanding of cities as complex systems, or in illuminating the implications for urban planning, there is still a lack of well-founded conceptual thinking on the methodological foundations and the strategies of modeling urban complexity across the disciplines. Bringing together experts from the fields of urban and spatial planning, ecology, urban geography, real estate analysis, organizational cybernetics, stochastic optimization, and literary studies, as well as specialists in various systems approaches and in transdisciplinary methodologies of urban analysis, the volum...

  9. Stochastic chemical kinetics theory and (mostly) systems biological applications

    CERN Document Server

    Érdi, Péter; Lente, Gabor

    2014-01-01

    This volume reviews the theory and simulation methods of stochastic kinetics by integrating historical and recent perspectives, presents applications, mostly in the context of systems biology and also in combustion theory. In recent years, due to the development in experimental techniques, such as optical imaging, single cell analysis, and fluorescence spectroscopy, biochemical kinetic data inside single living cells have increasingly been available. The emergence of systems biology brought renaissance in the application of stochastic kinetic methods.

  10. Systems biology of neutrophil differentiation and immune response

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Theilgaard-Mönch, Kim; Porse, Bo T; Borregaard, Niels

    2005-01-01

    Systems biology has emerged as a new scientific field, which aims at investigating biological processes at the genomic and proteomic levels. Recent studies have unravelled aspects of neutrophil differentiation and immune responses at the systems level using high-throughput technologies....... These studies have identified a plethora of novel effector proteins stored in the granules of neutrophils. In addition, these studies provide evidence that neutrophil differentiation and immune response are governed by a highly coordinated transcriptional programme that regulates cellular fate and function...

  11. Do Zoo Visitors Need Zoology Knowledge to Understand Conservation Messages? An Exploration of the Public Understanding of Animal Biology and of the Conservation of Biodiversity in a Zoo Setting

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dove, Tracy; Byrne, Jenny

    2014-01-01

    This study explores the current knowledge and understanding about animal biology of zoo visitors and investigates whether knowledge of animal biology influences the ability of people to understand how human activity affects biodiversity. Zoos can play a role in the development of scientific literacy in the fields of animal biology and biodiversity…

  12. Analyzing Defects in the "Caenorhabditis Elegans" Nervous System Using Organismal and Cell Biological Approaches

    Science.gov (United States)

    Guziewicz, Megan; Vitullo, Toni; Simmons, Bethany; Kohn, Rebecca Eustance

    2002-01-01

    The goal of this laboratory exercise is to increase student understanding of the impact of nervous system function at both the organismal and cellular levels. This inquiry-based exercise is designed for an undergraduate course examining principles of cell biology. After observing the movement of "Caenorhabditis elegans" with defects in their…

  13. Multiscale Problems in Circadian Systems Biology: From Gene to Cell to Performance

    Science.gov (United States)

    2012-03-22

    the gametogenetic cycles in tropical hermatypic corals to the appropriate spawning season since photosynthate is their primary source of energy...scale phenomena in many other biological systems including the annual spawning of certain species of corals and; (vi) derivation of rigorous...the application domains of ecology, with the broad technical theme of understanding synchronized population-scale phenomena, such as coral spawning

  14. Mathematical aspects of pattern formation in biological systems

    CERN Document Server

    Wei, Juncheng

    2013-01-01

    This monograph is concerned with the mathematical analysis of patterns which are encountered in biological systems. It summarises, expands and relates results obtained in the field during the last fifteen years. It also links the results to biological applications and highlights their relevance to phenomena in nature. Of particular concern are large-amplitude patterns far from equilibrium in biologically relevant models.The approach adopted in the monograph is based on the following paradigms:• Examine the existence of spiky steady states in reaction-diffusion systems and select as observabl

  15. A network biology approach to understanding the importance of chameleon proteins in human physiology and pathology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bahramali, Golnaz; Goliaei, Bahram; Minuchehr, Zarrin; Marashi, Sayed-Amir

    2017-02-01

    Chameleon proteins are proteins which include sequences that can adopt α-helix-β-strand (HE-chameleon) or α-helix-coil (HC-chameleon) or β-strand-coil (CE-chameleon) structures to operate their crucial biological functions. In this study, using a network-based approach, we examined the chameleon proteins to give a better knowledge on these proteins. We focused on proteins with identical chameleon sequences with more than or equal to seven residues long in different PDB entries, which adopt HE-chameleon, HC-chameleon, and CE-chameleon structures in the same protein. One hundred and ninety-one human chameleon proteins were identified via our in-house program. Then, protein-protein interaction (PPI) networks, Gene ontology (GO) enrichment, disease network, and pathway enrichment analyses were performed for our derived data set. We discovered that there are chameleon sequences which reside in protein-protein interaction regions between two proteins critical for their dual function. Analysis of the PPI networks for chameleon proteins introduced five hub proteins, namely TP53, EGFR, HSP90AA1, PPARA, and HIF1A, which were presented in four PPI clusters. The outcomes demonstrate that the chameleon regions are in critical domains of these proteins and are important in the development and treatment of human cancers. The present report is the first network-based functional study of chameleon proteins using computational approaches and might provide a new perspective for understanding the mechanisms of diseases helping us in developing new medical therapies along with discovering new proteins with chameleon properties which are highly important in cancer.

  16. Experimental and Modeling Approaches for Understanding the Effect of Gene Expression Noise in Biological Development

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    David M. Holloway

    2018-04-01

    Full Text Available Biological development involves numerous chemical and physical processes which must act in concert to reliably produce a cell, a tissue, or a body. To be successful, the developing organism must be robust to variability at many levels, such as the environment (e.g., temperature, moisture, upstream information (such as long-range positional information gradients, or intrinsic noise due to the stochastic nature of low concentration chemical kinetics. The latter is especially relevant to the regulation of gene expression in cell differentiation. The temporal stochasticity of gene expression has been studied in single celled organisms for nearly two decades, but only recently have techniques become available to gather temporally-resolved data across spatially-distributed gene expression patterns in developing multicellular organisms. These demonstrate temporal noisy “bursting” in the number of gene transcripts per cell, raising the question of how the transcript number defining a particular cell type is produced, such that one cell type can reliably be distinguished from a neighboring cell of different type along a tissue boundary. Stochastic spatio-temporal modeling of tissue-wide expression patterns can identify signatures for specific types of gene regulation, which can be used to extract regulatory mechanism information from experimental time series. This Perspective focuses on using this type of approach to study gene expression noise during the anterior-posterior segmentation of the fruit fly embryo. Advances in experimental and theoretical techniques will lead to an increasing quantification of expression noise that can be used to understand how regulatory mechanisms contribute to embryonic robustness across a range of developmental processes.

  17. Effects of Pesticides on Biological Systems

    OpenAIRE

    Ergul Belge Kurutas; Metin Kilinc

    2003-01-01

    The use of pesticid both in Turkey and other contries is widespread in order to combat against many pests which cause economical damages. However, pesticides in human pass through skin, respiratory or digestive systems and is metabolized by monooxygenase system dependent upon cytocrome P450 in liver. They also give rise to severe decreases cytochrome P450 and amount of "hem" enzyme activites of glucose-6-phosphatase, pyrophosphatase by stimulating lipid peroxidation on hepatic microsomes. In ...

  18. Primary energy-transformations in biological systems

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Lehninger, A.L.

    1980-10-01

    In this paper I shall review the main outlines of current research on the molecular aspects of the primary energy-coupling mechanisms in cells, those carried out by energy-transducing membranes. They include the capture of solar energy by the chloroplast membranes of green plants, used to generate carbohydrates and molecular oxygen from carbon dioxide and water, and the counterpart of photosynthesis, the process of respiration in heterotrophic organisms, in which reduced organic products generated by photosynthesis are oxidized at the expense of dioxygen to form carbon dioxide and water. Although the cycling of dioxygen, carbon dioxide, and organic matter between the plant and animal worlds is well known, it is not generally appreciated that the magnitude of biological energy flux in these cycles is huge compared to the total energy flux in man-made devices. A major consequence is that the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has been increasing at a significant rate, at a time when there is also a decrease, at least in some parts of the world, in the counterbalancing utilization of CO/sub 2/ by green plants, due to deforestation. The greenhouse effect of increased atmospheric CO/sub 2/ may not only change the earth's climate, but also may influence the rate of photosynthesis. It is also not generally appreciated that energy flow in the biosphere leads to production of enormous amounts of organic matter potentially useful in furnishing man's energy requirements.

  19. Can an engineer fix an immune system?--Rethinking theoretical biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mattiussi, Claudio

    2013-06-01

    In an instant classic paper (Lazebnik, in Cancer Cell 2(3); 2002: 179-182) biologist Yuri Lazebnik deplores the poor effectiveness of the approach adopted by biologists to understand and "fix" biological systems. Lazebnik suggests that to remedy this state of things biologist should take inspiration from the approach used by engineers to design, understand, and troubleshoot technological systems. In the present paper I substantiate Lazebnik's analysis by concretely showing how to apply the engineering approach to biological problems. I use an actual example of electronic circuit troubleshooting to ground the thesis that, in engineering, the crucial phases of any non-trivial troubleshooting process are aimed at generating a mechanistic explanation of the functioning of the system, which makes extensive recourse to problem-driven qualitative reasoning possibly based on cognitive artifacts applied to systems that are known to have been designed for function. To show how to translate these findings into biological practice I consider a concrete example of biological model building and "troubleshooting", aimed at the identification of a "fix" for the human immune system in presence of progressing cancer, autoimmune disease, and transplant rejection. The result is a novel immune system model--the danger model with regulatory cells--and new, original hypotheses concerning the development, prophylaxis, and therapy of these unwanted biological processes. Based on the manifest efficacy of the proposed approach, I suggest a refocusing of the activity of theoretical biologists along the engineering-inspired lines illustrated in the paper.

  20. Revision history aware repositories of computational models of biological systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Miller, Andrew K; Yu, Tommy; Britten, Randall; Cooling, Mike T; Lawson, James; Cowan, Dougal; Garny, Alan; Halstead, Matt D B; Hunter, Peter J; Nickerson, David P; Nunns, Geo; Wimalaratne, Sarala M; Nielsen, Poul M F

    2011-01-14

    Building repositories of computational models of biological systems ensures that published models are available for both education and further research, and can provide a source of smaller, previously verified models to integrate into a larger model. One problem with earlier repositories has been the limitations in facilities to record the revision history of models. Often, these facilities are limited to a linear series of versions which were deposited in the repository. This is problematic for several reasons. Firstly, there are many instances in the history of biological systems modelling where an 'ancestral' model is modified by different groups to create many different models. With a linear series of versions, if the changes made to one model are merged into another model, the merge appears as a single item in the history. This hides useful revision history information, and also makes further merges much more difficult, as there is no record of which changes have or have not already been merged. In addition, a long series of individual changes made outside of the repository are also all merged into a single revision when they are put back into the repository, making it difficult to separate out individual changes. Furthermore, many earlier repositories only retain the revision history of individual files, rather than of a group of files. This is an important limitation to overcome, because some types of models, such as CellML 1.1 models, can be developed as a collection of modules, each in a separate file. The need for revision history is widely recognised for computer software, and a lot of work has gone into developing version control systems and distributed version control systems (DVCSs) for tracking the revision history. However, to date, there has been no published research on how DVCSs can be applied to repositories of computational models of biological systems. We have extended the Physiome Model Repository software to be fully revision history aware

  1. Revision history aware repositories of computational models of biological systems

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Nickerson David P

    2011-01-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background Building repositories of computational models of biological systems ensures that published models are available for both education and further research, and can provide a source of smaller, previously verified models to integrate into a larger model. One problem with earlier repositories has been the limitations in facilities to record the revision history of models. Often, these facilities are limited to a linear series of versions which were deposited in the repository. This is problematic for several reasons. Firstly, there are many instances in the history of biological systems modelling where an 'ancestral' model is modified by different groups to create many different models. With a linear series of versions, if the changes made to one model are merged into another model, the merge appears as a single item in the history. This hides useful revision history information, and also makes further merges much more difficult, as there is no record of which changes have or have not already been merged. In addition, a long series of individual changes made outside of the repository are also all merged into a single revision when they are put back into the repository, making it difficult to separate out individual changes. Furthermore, many earlier repositories only retain the revision history of individual files, rather than of a group of files. This is an important limitation to overcome, because some types of models, such as CellML 1.1 models, can be developed as a collection of modules, each in a separate file. The need for revision history is widely recognised for computer software, and a lot of work has gone into developing version control systems and distributed version control systems (DVCSs for tracking the revision history. However, to date, there has been no published research on how DVCSs can be applied to repositories of computational models of biological systems. Results We have extended the Physiome Model

  2. The effects of academic literacy instruction on engagement and conceptual understanding of biology of ninth-grade students

    Science.gov (United States)

    Larson, Susan C.

    Academic language, discourse, vocabulary, motivation, and comprehension of complex texts and concepts are keys to learning subject-area content. The need for a disciplinary literacy approach in high school classrooms accelerates as students become increasing disengaged in school and as content complexity increases. In the present quasi-experimental mixed-method study, a ninth-grade biology unit was designed with an emphasis on promoting academic literacy skills, discourse, meaningful constructivist learning, interest development, and positive learning experiences in order to learn science content. Quantitative and qualitative analyses on a variety of measures completed by 222 students in two high schools revealed that those who received academic literacy instruction in science class performed at significantly higher levels of conceptual understanding of biology content, academic language and vocabulary use, reasoned thought, engagement, and quality of learning experience than control-group students receiving traditionally-organized instruction. Academic literacy was embedded into biology instruction to engage students in meaning-making discourses of science to promote learning. Academic literacy activities were organized according the phases of interest development to trigger and sustain interest and goal-oriented engagement throughout the unit. Specific methods included the Generative Vocabulary Matrix (GVM), scenario-based writing, and involvement in a variety of strategically-placed discourse activities to sustain or "boost" engagement for learning. Traditional instruction for the control group included teacher lecture, whole-group discussion, a conceptual organizer, and textbook reading. Theoretical foundations include flow theory, sociocultural learning theory, and interest theory. Qualitative data were obtained from field notes and participants' journals. Quantitative survey data were collected and analyzed using the Experience Sampling Method (ESM) to

  3. Exploring lipids with nonlinear optical microscopy in multiple biological systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Alfonso-Garcia, Alba

    Lipids are crucial biomolecules for the well being of humans. Altered lipid metabolism may give rise to a variety of diseases that affect organs from the cardiovascular to the central nervous system. A deeper understanding of lipid metabolic processes would spur medical research towards developing precise diagnostic tools, treatment methods, and preventive strategies for reducing the impact of lipid diseases. Lipid visualization remains a complex task because of the perturbative effect exerted by traditional biochemical assays and most fluorescence markers. Coherent Raman scattering (CRS) microscopy enables interrogation of biological samples with minimum disturbance, and is particularly well suited for label-free visualization of lipids, providing chemical specificity without compromising on spatial resolution. Hyperspectral imaging yields large datasets that benefit from tailored multivariate analysis. In this thesis, CRS microscopy was combined with Raman spectroscopy and other label-free nonlinear optical techniques to analyze lipid metabolism in multiple biological systems. We used nonlinear Raman techniques to characterize Meibum secretions in the progression of dry eye disease, where the lipid and protein contributions change in ratio and phase segregation. We employed similar tools to examine lipid droplets in mice livers aboard a spaceflight mission, which lose their retinol content contributing to the onset of nonalcoholic fatty-liver disease. We also focused on atherosclerosis, a disease that revolves around lipid-rich plaques in arterial walls. We examined the lipid content of macrophages, whose variable phenotype gives rise to contrasting healing and inflammatory activities. We also proposed new label-free markers, based on lifetime imaging, for macrophage phenotype, and to detect products of lipid oxidation. Cholesterol was also detected in hepatitis C virus infected cells, and in specific strains of age-related macular degeneration diseased cells by

  4. Modeling and simulation of biological systems using SPICE language.

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Morgan Madec

    Full Text Available The article deals with BB-SPICE (SPICE for Biochemical and Biological Systems, an extension of the famous Simulation Program with Integrated Circuit Emphasis (SPICE. BB-SPICE environment is composed of three modules: a new textual and compact description formalism for biological systems, a converter that handles this description and generates the SPICE netlist of the equivalent electronic circuit and NGSPICE which is an open-source SPICE simulator. In addition, the environment provides back and forth interfaces with SBML (System Biology Markup Language, a very common description language used in systems biology. BB-SPICE has been developed in order to bridge the gap between the simulation of biological systems on the one hand and electronics circuits on the other hand. Thus, it is suitable for applications at the interface between both domains, such as development of design tools for synthetic biology and for the virtual prototyping of biosensors and lab-on-chip. Simulation results obtained with BB-SPICE and COPASI (an open-source software used for the simulation of biochemical systems have been compared on a benchmark of models commonly used in systems biology. Results are in accordance from a quantitative viewpoint but BB-SPICE outclasses COPASI by 1 to 3 orders of magnitude regarding the computation time. Moreover, as our software is based on NGSPICE, it could take profit of incoming updates such as the GPU implementation, of the coupling with powerful analysis and verification tools or of the integration in design automation tools (synthetic biology.

  5. Shape Understanding System – Knowledge Implementation and Learning

    CERN Document Server

    Les, Zbigniew

    2013-01-01

    This book presents the selected results of research on the further development of the shape understanding system (SUS) described in our previous book titled “Shape Understanding System: the First Steps Toward the Visual Thinking Machines”. This is the second book that presents the results of research in the area of thinking and understanding carried out by authors in the newly founded the Queen Jadwiga Research Institute of Understanding. In this book, the new term knowledge implementation is introduced to denote the new method of the meaningful learning in the context of machine understanding. SUS ability to understand is related to the different categories of objects such as the category of visual objects, the category of sensory objects and the category of text objects. In this book, new terms and concepts are introduced in order to describe and explain some issues connected with SUS development. These terms are explained by referring to the content of our books and other our works rather than to exist...

  6. Amoxicillin in a biological water recovery system

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Morse, A.; Jackson, A.; Rainwater, K. [Texas Tech Univ., Water Resources Center, Lubbock, Texas (United States); Pickering, K. [Johnson Space Center, NASA, Houston, Texas (United States)

    2002-06-15

    Pharmaceuticals are new contaminants of concern in the aquatic environment, having been identified in groundwater, surface water, and residential tap water. Possible sources of pharmaceuticals include household wastewaters, runoff from feedlots, or waste discharges from pharmaceutical manufacturing plants. When surface water or groundwater supplies impacted by pharmaceuticals are used in drinking water production, the contaminants may reduce drinking water quality. Many pharmaceuticals, such as amoxicillin, pass through the body largely unmetabolized and directly enter wastewater collection systems. Pharmaceuticals are designed to persist in the body long enough to have the desired therapeutic effect. Therefore, they may also have the ability to persist in the environment (Seiler et al, 1999). The purpose of this work is to determine the overall transformation potential of a candidate pharmaceutical in wastewater treatment with specific emphasis on recycle systems. Amoxicillin is the selected pharmaceutical agent, an orally absorbed broad-spectrum antibiotic with a variety of clinical uses including ear, nose, and throat infections and lower respiratory tract infections. Experiments were conducted using an anaerobic reactor (with NO{sub 3}{sup -} and NO{sub 2}{sup -} as the e{sup -} acceptors) followed by a two-phase nitrifying tubular reactor. Influent composed of water, urine and surfactant was spiked with amoxicillin and fed into the wastewater recycle system. The concentration of amoxicillin in the feed and effluent was quantified using an HPLC. Results from this study include potential for long-term buildup in recycled systems, accumulation of breakdown products and possible transfer of antibiotic resistance to microorganisms in the system effluent. In addition, the results of this study may provide information on contamination potential for communities that are considering supplementing drinking water supplies with recovered wastewater or for entities

  7. Amoxicillin in a biological water recovery system

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Morse, A.; Jackson, A.; Rainwater, K.; Pickering, K.

    2002-01-01

    Pharmaceuticals are new contaminants of concern in the aquatic environment, having been identified in groundwater, surface water, and residential tap water. Possible sources of pharmaceuticals include household wastewaters, runoff from feedlots, or waste discharges from pharmaceutical manufacturing plants. When surface water or groundwater supplies impacted by pharmaceuticals are used in drinking water production, the contaminants may reduce drinking water quality. Many pharmaceuticals, such as amoxicillin, pass through the body largely unmetabolized and directly enter wastewater collection systems. Pharmaceuticals are designed to persist in the body long enough to have the desired therapeutic effect. Therefore, they may also have the ability to persist in the environment (Seiler et al, 1999). The purpose of this work is to determine the overall transformation potential of a candidate pharmaceutical in wastewater treatment with specific emphasis on recycle systems. Amoxicillin is the selected pharmaceutical agent, an orally absorbed broad-spectrum antibiotic with a variety of clinical uses including ear, nose, and throat infections and lower respiratory tract infections. Experiments were conducted using an anaerobic reactor (with NO 3 - and NO 2 - as the e - acceptors) followed by a two-phase nitrifying tubular reactor. Influent composed of water, urine and surfactant was spiked with amoxicillin and fed into the wastewater recycle system. The concentration of amoxicillin in the feed and effluent was quantified using an HPLC. Results from this study include potential for long-term buildup in recycled systems, accumulation of breakdown products and possible transfer of antibiotic resistance to microorganisms in the system effluent. In addition, the results of this study may provide information on contamination potential for communities that are considering supplementing drinking water supplies with recovered wastewater or for entities considering a closed loop

  8. Understanding the biological effects of thorium in human cells and animals and developing efficient approaches for its decorporation and mitigation

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Kumar, Amit; Ali, Manjoor; Pandey, Badri N.

    2016-01-01

    Thorium-232 (Th) is being realized as a potential source of nuclear fuel for meeting long-term energy generation in India/other nations. In view of utilizing Th, it is hoped that mining, extraction, purification, back-end processing and disposal would increase significantly in near future. Therefore, understanding the biological effects of Th would enable its efficient utilization with adequate human health protection. Biological half-life and associated health effects of Th govern by its speciation, bio-kinetics, radiation decay and organ-specific accumulation due to Fe-like behaviour inside the body system. Our animal studies showed that Th mainly accumulates in liver and bone, in contrast to the accumulation of uranium in kidney. Cell culture experiments were performed to study the binding/internalization mechanism of Th (IV) with human liver cells (HepG2). Experiments using HepG2 cells suggested the role of transferrin (Tf), a blood protein in Th internalization. Recently, our in vitro study observed that the low concentration of Th nitrate induced proliferation in HepG2 through IGF-1R pathway. This study may have relevance to prevent early effects of Th using IGF-1 receptor-specific inhibitor. One of the major goals of our research group is to develop biological approaches for efficient decorporation of Th from liver. In this direction, liposomal form of DTPA has been optimized to effectively deliver DTPA to the liver. Testing of liposomal-DTPA in Th injected animal showed significant enhancement in removal of Th from liver and blood as compared to non-liposomal DTPA. Using ex-vivo human erythrocytes hemolysis assay and in whole blood condition, further efforts are in-progress to evaluate metal binding molecules in search of more effective decorporating agent than DTPA. In conclusion, this paper would discuss the results on mechanism of biological effects of Th on cells and proteins and newer molecules/approaches for its decorporation for human application

  9. Scaffolding students' understanding of force in pulley systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Rouinfar, Amy; Madsen, Adrian M.; Hoang, Tram Do Ngoc; Puntambekar, Sadhana; Rebello, N. Sanjay

    2013-01-01

    Recent research results have found that students using virtual manipulatives perform as well or better on measures of conceptual understanding than their peers who used physical equipment. We report on a study with students in a conceptual physics laboratory using either physical or virtual manipulatives to investigate forces in pulley systems. Written materials guided students through a sequence of activities designed to scaffold their understanding of force in pulley systems. The activity sequences facilitated students' sense making by requiring them to make and test predictions about various pulley systems by building and comparing different systems. We investigate the ways in which students discuss force while navigating the scaffolding activities and how these discussions compare between the physical and virtual treatments.

  10. Micromechanics of engineered and biological systems

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    Here, the structural deforma- tion interacts nonlinearly with the static electric field ensuing between electrical conductors and dielectrics. As has been argued well in the litera- ture, electrostatic force scales vary favourably at the microscale and therefore numerous micro- systems devices use this. Many such devices are.

  11. Tunable promoters in synthetic and systems biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Dehli, Tore; Solem, Christian; Jensen, Peter Ruhdal

    2012-01-01

    for accomplishing such altered gene expression levels are discussed here along with examples of their use, and ideas for new tools are described. The road ahead looks very promising for synthetic and systems biologists as tools to achieve just about anything in terms of tuning and timing multiple gene expression...

  12. System chemical biology studies of endocrine disruptors

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Taboureau, Olivier; Oprea, Tudor I.

    Endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) alter hormonal balance and other physiological systems through inappropriate developmental or adult exposure, perturbing the reproductive function of further generations. While disruption of key receptors (e.g., estrogen, androgen, and thyroid) at the ligand...... effects resulting in the perturbation of different proteins associated to particular diseases (e.g., cryptorchidism) were evaluated....

  13. PathSys: integrating molecular interaction graphs for systems biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Raval Alpan

    2006-02-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The goal of information integration in systems biology is to combine information from a number of databases and data sets, which are obtained from both high and low throughput experiments, under one data management scheme such that the cumulative information provides greater biological insight than is possible with individual information sources considered separately. Results Here we present PathSys, a graph-based system for creating a combined database of networks of interaction for generating integrated view of biological mechanisms. We used PathSys to integrate over 14 curated and publicly contributed data sources for the budding yeast (S. cerevisiae and Gene Ontology. A number of exploratory questions were formulated as a combination of relational and graph-based queries to the integrated database. Thus, PathSys is a general-purpose, scalable, graph-data warehouse of biological information, complete with a graph manipulation and a query language, a storage mechanism and a generic data-importing mechanism through schema-mapping. Conclusion Results from several test studies demonstrate the effectiveness of the approach in retrieving biologically interesting relations between genes and proteins, the networks connecting them, and of the utility of PathSys as a scalable graph-based warehouse for interaction-network integration and a hypothesis generator system. The PathSys's client software, named BiologicalNetworks, developed for navigation and analyses of molecular networks, is available as a Java Web Start application at http://brak.sdsc.edu/pub/BiologicalNetworks.

  14. Towards Engineering Biological Systems in a Broader Context.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Venturelli, Ophelia S; Egbert, Robert G; Arkin, Adam P

    2016-02-27

    Significant advances have been made in synthetic biology to program information processing capabilities in cells. While these designs can function predictably in controlled laboratory environments, the reliability of these devices in complex, temporally changing environments has not yet been characterized. As human society faces global challenges in agriculture, human health and energy, synthetic biology should develop predictive design principles for biological systems operating in complex environments. Natural biological systems have evolved mechanisms to overcome innumerable and diverse environmental challenges. Evolutionary design rules should be extracted and adapted to engineer stable and predictable ecological function. We highlight examples of natural biological responses spanning the cellular, population and microbial community levels that show promise in synthetic biology contexts. We argue that synthetic circuits embedded in host organisms or designed ecologies informed by suitable measurement of biotic and abiotic environmental parameters could be used as engineering substrates to achieve target functions in complex environments. Successful implementation of these methods will broaden the context in which synthetic biological systems can be applied to solve important problems. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  15. Construction of a Linux based chemical and biological information system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Molnár, László; Vágó, István; Fehér, András

    2003-01-01

    A chemical and biological information system with a Web-based easy-to-use interface and corresponding databases has been developed. The constructed system incorporates all chemical, numerical and textual data related to the chemical compounds, including numerical biological screen results. Users can search the database by traditional textual/numerical and/or substructure or similarity queries through the web interface. To build our chemical database management system, we utilized existing IT components such as ORACLE or Tripos SYBYL for database management and Zope application server for the web interface. We chose Linux as the main platform, however, almost every component can be used under various operating systems.

  16. Database management systems understanding and applying database technology

    CERN Document Server

    Gorman, Michael M

    1991-01-01

    Database Management Systems: Understanding and Applying Database Technology focuses on the processes, methodologies, techniques, and approaches involved in database management systems (DBMSs).The book first takes a look at ANSI database standards and DBMS applications and components. Discussion focus on application components and DBMS components, implementing the dynamic relationship application, problems and benefits of dynamic relationship DBMSs, nature of a dynamic relationship application, ANSI/NDL, and DBMS standards. The manuscript then ponders on logical database, interrogation, and phy

  17. Understanding complex systems: lessons from Auzoux's and von ...

    Indian Academy of Sciences (India)

    2009-12-09

    Dec 9, 2009 ... Animal and human anatomy is among the most complex systems known, and suitable teaching methods have been of great importance in the progress of knowledge. Examining the human body is part of the process by which medical students come to understand living forms. However, the need to ...

  18. Metabolic modeling to understand and redesign microbial systems

    NARCIS (Netherlands)

    Heck, van Ruben G.A.

    2017-01-01

    The goals of this thesis are to increase the understanding of microbial metabolism and to functionally (re-)design microbial systems using Genome- Scale Metabolic models (GSMs). GSMs are species-specific knowledge repositories that can be used to predict metabolic activities for wildtype and

  19. Virtual Solar System Project: Building Understanding through Model Building.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barab, Sasha A.; Hay, Kenneth E.; Barnett, Michael; Keating, Thomas

    2000-01-01

    Describes an introductory astronomy course for undergraduate students in which students use three-dimensional (3-D) modeling tools to model the solar system and develop rich understandings of astronomical phenomena. Indicates that 3-D modeling can be used effectively in regular undergraduate university courses as a tool to develop understandings…

  20. Understanding Learner Agency as a Complex Dynamic System

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mercer, Sarah

    2011-01-01

    This paper attempts to contribute to a fuller understanding of the nature of language learner agency by considering it as a complex dynamic system. The purpose of the study was to explore detailed situated data to examine to what extent it is feasible to view learner agency through the lens of complexity theory. Data were generated through a…

  1. Conceptual Challenges of the Systemic Approach in Understanding Cell Differentiation.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Paldi, Andras

    2018-01-01

    The cells of a multicellular organism are derived from a single zygote and genetically identical. Yet, they are phenotypically very different. This difference is the result of a process commonly called cell differentiation. How the phenotypic diversity emerges during ontogenesis or regeneration is a central and intensely studied but still unresolved issue in biology. Cell biology is facing conceptual challenges that are frequently confused with methodological difficulties. How to define a cell type? What stability or change means in the context of cell differentiation and how to deal with the ubiquitous molecular variations seen in the living cells? What are the driving forces of the change? We propose to reframe the problem of cell differentiation in a systemic way by incorporating different theoretical approaches. The new conceptual framework is able to capture the insights made at different levels of cellular organization and considered previously as contradictory. It also provides a formal strategy for further experimental studies.

  2. Modeling complexity: cognitive constraints and computational model-building in integrative systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    MacLeod, Miles; Nersessian, Nancy J

    2018-01-08

    Modern integrative systems biology defines itself by the complexity of the problems it takes on through computational modeling and simulation. However in integrative systems biology computers do not solve problems alone. Problem solving depends as ever on human cognitive resources. Current philosophical accounts hint at their importance, but it remains to be understood what roles human cognition plays in computational modeling. In this paper we focus on practices through which modelers in systems biology use computational simulation and other tools to handle the cognitive complexity of their modeling problems so as to be able to make significant contributions to understanding, intervening in, and controlling complex biological systems. We thus show how cognition, especially processes of simulative mental modeling, is implicated centrally in processes of model-building. At the same time we suggest how the representational choices of what to model in systems biology are limited or constrained as a result. Such constraints help us both understand and rationalize the restricted form that problem solving takes in the field and why its results do not always measure up to expectations.

  3. How to Generate Understanding of the Scientific Process in Introductory Biology: A Student-Designed Laboratory Exercise on Yeast Fermentation

    Science.gov (United States)

    Collins, Linda T.; Bell, Rebekah P.

    2004-01-01

    Heavy faculty teaching loads and limited funds biology teachers designed certain objectives in order to increase the understandability of the subject matter of the laboratory exercises they write. In relation to these objectives an old "cookbook" laboratory exercise on yeast fermentation is introduced which involve students asking questions,…

  4. Iterative Systems Biology for Medicine – time for advancing from network signature to mechanistic equations

    KAUST Repository

    Gomez-Cabrero, David

    2017-05-09

    The rise and growth of Systems Biology following the sequencing of the human genome has been astounding. Early on, an iterative wet-dry methodology was formulated which turned out as a successful approach in deciphering biological complexity. Such type of analysis effectively identified and associated molecular network signatures operative in biological processes across different systems. Yet, it has proven difficult to distinguish between causes and consequences, thus making it challenging to attack medical questions where we require precise causative drug targets and disease mechanisms beyond a web of associated markers. Here we review principal advances with regard to identification of structure, dynamics, control, and design of biological systems, following the structure in the visionary review from 2002 by Dr. Kitano. Yet, here we find that the underlying challenge of finding the governing mechanistic system equations enabling precision medicine remains open thus rendering clinical translation of systems biology arduous. However, stunning advances in raw computational power, generation of high-precision multi-faceted biological data, combined with powerful algorithms hold promise to set the stage for data-driven identification of equations implicating a fundamental understanding of living systems during health and disease.

  5. Dynamic systems for everyone understanding how our world works

    CERN Document Server

    Ghosh, Asish

    2015-01-01

    This book is a study of the interactions between different types of systems, their environment, and their subsystems.  The author explains how basic systems principles are applied in engineered (mechanical, electromechanical, etc.) systems and then guides the reader to understand how the same principles can be applied to social, political, economic systems, as well as in everyday life.  Readers from a variety of disciplines will benefit from the understanding of system behaviors and will be able to apply those principles in various contexts.  The book includes many examples covering various types of systems.  The treatment of the subject is non-mathematical, and the book considers some of the latest concepts in the systems discipline, such as agent-based systems, optimization, and discrete events and procedures.  ·         Shows how system knowledge may be applied in many different areas without the need for deep mathematical knowledge; ·         Demonstrates how to model and simulate s...

  6. Designing and testing a classroom curriculum to teach preschoolers about the biology of physical activity: The respiration system as an underlying biological causal mechanism

    Science.gov (United States)

    Ewing, Tracy S.

    The present study examined young children's understanding of respiration and oxygen as a source of vital energy underlying physical activity. Specifically, the purpose of the study was to explore whether a coherent biological theory, characterized by an understanding that bodily parts (heart and lungs) and processes (oxygen in respiration) as part of a biological system, can be taught as a foundational concept to reason about physical activity. The effects of a biology-based intervention curriculum designed to teach preschool children about bodily functions as a part of the respiratory system, the role of oxygen as a vital substance and how physical activity acts an energy source were examined. Participants were recruited from three private preschool classrooms (two treatment; 1 control) in Southern California and included a total of 48 four-year-old children (30 treatment; 18 control). Findings from this study suggested that young children could be taught relevant biological concepts about the role of oxygen in respiratory processes. Children who received biology-based intervention curriculum made significant gains in their understanding of the biology of respiration, identification of physical and sedentary activities. In addition these children demonstrated that coherence of conceptual knowledge was correlated with improved accuracy at activity identification and reasoning about the inner workings of the body contributing to endurance. Findings from this study provided evidence to support the benefits of providing age appropriate but complex coherent biological instruction to children in early childhood settings.

  7. Thinking processes of Filipino teachers representation of schema of some biology topics: Its effects to the students conceptual understanding

    Science.gov (United States)

    Barquilla, Manuel B.

    2018-01-01

    This study is a qualitative-quantitative research, where the main concern is to investigate Content knowledge representation of Filipino Teachers in their schema (proposition, linear ordering and imagery) of some biology topics. The five biology topics includes: Photosynthesis, Cellular Respiration, human reproductive system, Mendelian genetics and NonMendelian genetics. The study focuses on the six (6) biology teachers and a total of 222 students in their respective classes. Of the Six (6) teachers, three (3) are under the Science curriculum and three (3) under regular curriculum in both public and private schools in Iligan city and Lanao del Norte, Philippines. The study utilizes interpretative case-study method, bracketing method, and concept analysis for qualitative part. For quantitative, it uses a nonparametric statistical tool, Kendall's Tau to determine congruence of students and teachers' concept maps and paired t-test for testing the significant differences of pre-and post-instruction concept maps to determine the effects of students' conceptual understanding before and after the teacher's representation of their schema that requires the teachers' thinking processes. The data were cross-validated with two or more techniques used in the study. The data collection entailed seven (7) months immersion: one (1) month for preliminary phase for the researcher to gain teachers' and students' confidence and the succeeding six (6) months for main observation and data collection. Results indicate that the teacher utilize six methods to construct meaning of concepts, three methods of representing classification, four methods to represent relationships, seven methods to represent transformation and three methods to represent causation in planning and implementing the lessons. They often modify definitions in the textbook and express these in lingua franca to be better understood by the students. Furthermore, the teachers' analogs given to student are sometimes far

  8. Inherit the policy: A sociocultural approach to understanding evolutionary biology policy in South Carolina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Gregory D.

    South Carolina biology Indicator 5.6 calls for students to "Summarize ways that scientists use data from a variety of sources to investigate and critically analyze aspects of evolutionary theory" (South Carolina Department of Education, 2006). Levinson and Sutton (2001) offered a sociocultural approach to policy that considers cultural and historical influences at all levels of the policy process. Lipsky (1980/2010) and others have identified teachers as de facto policy makers, exercising broad discretion in the execution of their work. This study looks to Ajzen's Theory of Planned Behavior as an initial framework to inform how evolutionary biology policy in South Carolina is conceptualized and understood at different levels of the policy process. The results of this study indicate that actors in the state's evolutionary biology policy process draw upon a myriad of Discourses (Gee, 1999/2005). These Discourses shape cultural dynamics and the agency of the policy actors as they navigate conflicting messages between testing mandates and evolutionary biology policy. There indeed exist gaps between how evolutionary biology policy in South Carolina is conceptualized and understood at the different levels of the policy process. Evidence from this study suggests that appropriation-level policy actors must be brought into the Discourse related to the critical analysis of evolutionary biology and academic freedom legislation must be enacted if South Carolina biology Indicator 5.6 is to realize practical significance in educational policy.

  9. Forty Years of Ebolavirus Molecular Biology: Understanding a Novel Disease Agent Through the Development and Application of New Technologies.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Groseth, Allison; Hoenen, Thomas

    2017-01-01

    Molecular biology is a broad discipline that seeks to understand biological phenomena at a molecular level, and achieves this through the study of DNA, RNA, proteins, and/or other macromolecules (e.g., those involved in the modification of these substrates). Consequently, it relies on the availability of a wide variety of methods that deal with the collection, preservation, inactivation, separation, manipulation, imaging, and analysis of these molecules. As such the state of the art in the field of ebolavirus molecular biology research (and that of all other viruses) is largely intertwined with, if not driven by, advancements in the technical methodologies available for these kinds of studies. Here we review of the current state of our knowledge regarding ebolavirus biology and emphasize the associated methods that made these discoveries possible.

  10. The Impact of Nanoparticle Surface Chemistry on Biological Systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Thorn, Angie Sue Morris

    The unique properties of nanomaterials, such as their small size and large surface area-to-volume ratios, have attracted tremendous interest in the scientific community over the last few decades. Thus, the synthesis and characterization of many different types of nanoparticles has been well defined and reported on in the literature. Current research efforts have redirected from the basic study of nanomaterial synthesis and their properties to more application-based studies where the development of functionally active materials is necessary. Today such nanoparticle-based systems exist for a range of biomedical applications including imaging, drug delivery and sensors. The inherent properties of the nanomaterial, although important, aren't always ideal for specific applications. In order to optimize nanoparticles for biomedical applications it is often desirable to tune their surface properties. Researchers have shown that these surface properties (such as charge, hydrophobicity, or reactivity) play a direct role in the interactions between nanoparticles and biological systems can be altered by attaching molecules to the surface of nanoparticles. In this work, the effects of physicochemical properties of a wide variety of nanoparticles was investigated using in vitro and in vivo models. For example, copper oxide (CuO) nanoparticles were of interest due to their instability in biological media. These nanoparticles undergo dissolution when in an aqueous environment and tend to aggregate. Therefore, the cytotoxicity of two sizes of CuO NPs was evaluated in cultured cells to develop a better understanding of how these propertied effect toxicity outcomes in biological systems. From these studies, it was determined that CuO NPs are cytotoxic to lung cells in a size-dependent manner and that dissolved copper ions contribute to the cytotoxicity however it is not solely responsible for cell death. Moreover, silica nanoparticles are one of the most commonly used nanomaterials

  11. Biological effect of radiation. Basis for understanding the risk of Fukushima nuclear accident

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Imaoka, Tatsuhiko

    2011-01-01

    The radionuclide release in the Fukushima Nuclear Accident has induced a tremendous anxiety on possible health effects of low dose radiation. When radiation hits a cell in an organism, it may induce DNA damages which, if not repaired properly, lead to either cell death or genetic mutation. If function of the tissue is lost as a result of cell death, various tissue responses including dysfunction of hematopoietic tissues, sterility and skin responses may occur; these responses are not manifested if the radiation dose is low enough. Genetic mutation is considered to occur, albeit at a low frequency, even if the radiation dose is very small. Cancer is a result of genetic mutation and its probability is considered to rise, albeit slightly, if radiation induces a small amount of additional mutations. These assumptions lead to a notion that there is no 'safety dose' below which radiation does not cause any cancer. On the other hand, the study of atomic bomb survivors of Hiroshima and Nagasaki provides the most reliable quantitative information on the relationship between radiation dose and accompanying increase in cancer risk. The analysis so far indicates that cancer risk increases by 0.5-fold, compared to a background level, if a human body is exposed to 1 sievert of radiation; at lower doses, the risk is proportional to the dose, but it is impossible to detect cancer risk associated with 100 milli sievert of exposure because of statistical limitations. Although exposure to atomic bomb radiation occurred in a very little instance, the current situation poses a prolonged (i.e., low dose rate) exposure, probably resulting in still lower cancer risk. Still, since current radiation exposure has no benefit, unlike that in medical situations, it is important to reduce it to a level as low as reasonably achievable. I will explain the biological effect of radiation, including its mechanistic basis and effects on the human body, and wish to help the audience to

  12. Systematic integration of experimental data and models in systems biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Li, Peter; Dada, Joseph O; Jameson, Daniel; Spasic, Irena; Swainston, Neil; Carroll, Kathleen; Dunn, Warwick; Khan, Farid; Malys, Naglis; Messiha, Hanan L; Simeonidis, Evangelos; Weichart, Dieter; Winder, Catherine; Wishart, Jill; Broomhead, David S; Goble, Carole A; Gaskell, Simon J; Kell, Douglas B; Westerhoff, Hans V; Mendes, Pedro; Paton, Norman W

    2010-11-29

    The behaviour of biological systems can be deduced from their mathematical models. However, multiple sources of data in diverse forms are required in the construction of a model in order to define its components and their biochemical reactions, and corresponding parameters. Automating the assembly and use of systems biology models is dependent upon data integration processes involving the interoperation of data and analytical resources. Taverna workflows have been developed for the automated assembly of quantitative parameterised metabolic networks in the Systems Biology Markup Language (SBML). A SBML model is built in a systematic fashion by the workflows which starts with the construction of a qualitative network using data from a MIRIAM-compliant genome-scale model of yeast metabolism. This is followed by parameterisation of the SBML model with experimental data from two repositories, the SABIO-RK enzyme kinetics database and a database of quantitative experimental results. The models are then calibrated and simulated in workflows that call out to COPASIWS, the web service interface to the COPASI software application for analysing biochemical networks. These systems biology workflows were evaluated for their ability to construct a parameterised model of yeast glycolysis. Distributed information about metabolic reactions that have been described to MIRIAM standards enables the automated assembly of quantitative systems biology models of metabolic networks based on user-defined criteria. Such data integration processes can be implemented as Taverna workflows to provide a rapid overview of the components and their relationships within a biochemical system.

  13. Understanding energy technology developments from an innovation system perspective

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Borup, M.; Nygaard Madsen, A. [Risoe National Lab., DTU, Systems Analysis Dept., Roskilde (Denmark); Gregersen, Birgitte [Aalborg Univ., Department of Business Studies (Denmark)

    2007-05-15

    With the increased market-orientation and privatisation of the energy area, the perspective of innovation is becoming more and more relevant for understanding the dynamics of change and technology development in the area. A better understanding of the systemic and complex processes of innovation is needed. This paper presents an innovation systems analysis of new and emerging energy technologies in Denmark. The study focuses on five technology areas: bio fuels, hydrogen technology, wind energy, solar cells and energy-efficient end-use technologies. The main result of the analysis is that the technology areas are quite diverse in a number of innovation-relevant issues like actor set-up, institutional structure, maturity, and connections between market and non-market aspects. The paper constitutes background for discussing the framework conditions for transition to sustainable energy technologies and strengths and weaknesses of the innovation systems. (au)

  14. Understanding complex urban systems integrating multidisciplinary data in urban models

    CERN Document Server

    Gebetsroither-Geringer, Ernst; Atun, Funda; Werner, Liss

    2016-01-01

    This book is devoted to the modeling and understanding of complex urban systems. This second volume of Understanding Complex Urban Systems focuses on the challenges of the modeling tools, concerning, e.g., the quality and quantity of data and the selection of an appropriate modeling approach. It is meant to support urban decision-makers—including municipal politicians, spatial planners, and citizen groups—in choosing an appropriate modeling approach for their particular modeling requirements. The contributors to this volume are from different disciplines, but all share the same goal: optimizing the representation of complex urban systems. They present and discuss a variety of approaches for dealing with data-availability problems and finding appropriate modeling approaches—and not only in terms of computer modeling. The selection of articles featured in this volume reflect a broad variety of new and established modeling approaches such as: - An argument for using Big Data methods in conjunction with Age...

  15. Engineering plant metabolism into microbes: from systems biology to synthetic biology.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Xu, Peng; Bhan, Namita; Koffas, Mattheos A G

    2013-04-01

    Plant metabolism represents an enormous repository of compounds that are of pharmaceutical and biotechnological importance. Engineering plant metabolism into microbes will provide sustainable solutions to produce pharmaceutical and fuel molecules that could one day replace substantial portions of the current fossil-fuel based economy. Metabolic engineering entails targeted manipulation of biosynthetic pathways to maximize yields of desired products. Recent advances in Systems Biology and the emergence of Synthetic Biology have accelerated our ability to design, construct and optimize cell factories for metabolic engineering applications. Progress in predicting and modeling genome-scale metabolic networks, versatile gene assembly platforms and delicate synthetic pathway optimization strategies has provided us exciting opportunities to exploit the full potential of cell metabolism. In this review, we will discuss how systems and synthetic biology tools can be integrated to create tailor-made cell factories for efficient production of natural products and fuel molecules in microorganisms. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Assessing Students' Understandings of Biological Models and Their Use in Science to Evaluate a Theoretical Framework

    Science.gov (United States)

    Grünkorn, Juliane; Upmeier zu Belzen, Annette; Krüger, Dirk

    2014-01-01

    Research in the field of students' understandings of models and their use in science describes different frameworks concerning these understandings. Currently, there is no conjoint framework that combines these structures and so far, no investigation has focused on whether it reflects students' understandings sufficiently (empirical evaluation).…

  17. Stochastic differential equations and a biological system

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Wang, Chunyan

    1994-01-01

    . The simulated results are compared with the experimental data, and it is found that the Euler method is the most simple end efficient method for the stochastic growth model considered. Estimation of the parameters of the growth model is based on the stochastic Kalman filter and a continuous Markov process......The purpose of this Ph.D. study is to explore the property of a growth process. The study includes solving and simulating of the growth process which is described in terms of stochastic differential equations. The identification of the growth and variability parameters of the process based...... been developed. Their properties and the relationship between them are discussed. The evolution of a dynamic system or process is usually of great practical interest. In order to simulate the evolution of the process, alternative methods are used to get numerical solutions. In this study, Euler...

  18. Nuclear magnetic resonance studies of biological systems

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Antypas, W.G. Jr.

    1988-01-01

    The difference between intracellular and extracellular proton relaxation rates provides the basis for the determination of the mean hemoglobin concentration (MHC) in red blood cells. The observed water T 1 relaxation data from red blood cell samples under various conditions were fit to the complete equation for the time-dependent decay of magnetization for a two-compartment system including chemical exchange. The MHC for each sample was calculated from the hematocrit and the intracellular water fraction as determined by NMR. The binding of the phosphorylcholine (PC) analogue, 2-(trimethylphosphonio)-ethylphosphate (phosphoryl-phosphocholine, PPC) to the PC binding myeloma proteins TEPC-15, McPC 603, and MOPC 167 was studied by 31 P NMR

  19. Computational brain models: Advances from system biology and future challenges

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    George E. Barreto

    2015-02-01

    Full Text Available Computational brain models focused on the interactions between neurons and astrocytes, modeled via metabolic reconstructions, are reviewed. The large source of experimental data provided by the -omics techniques and the advance/application of computational and data-management tools are being fundamental. For instance, in the understanding of the crosstalk between these cells, the key neuroprotective mechanisms mediated by astrocytes in specific metabolic scenarios (1 and the identification of biomarkers for neurodegenerative diseases (2,3. However, the modeling of these interactions demands a clear view of the metabolic and signaling pathways implicated, but most of them are controversial and are still under evaluation (4. Hence, to gain insight into the complexity of these interactions a current view of the main pathways implicated in the neuron-astrocyte communication processes have been made from recent experimental reports and reviews. Furthermore, target problems, limitations and main conclusions have been identified from metabolic models of the brain reported from 2010. Finally, key aspects to take into account into the development of a computational model of the brain and topics that could be approached from a systems biology perspective in future research are highlighted.

  20. Applications of dynamical systems in biology and medicine

    CERN Document Server

    Radunskaya, Ami

    2015-01-01

    This volume highlights problems from a range of biological and medical applications that can be interpreted as questions about system behavior or control.  Topics include drug resistance in cancer and malaria, biological fluid dynamics, auto-regulation in the kidney, anti-coagulation therapy, evolutionary diversification and photo-transduction.  Mathematical techniques used to describe and investigate these biological and medical problems include ordinary, partial and stochastic differentiation equations, hybrid discrete-continuous approaches, as well as 2 and 3D numerical simulation. .

  1. The Effectiveness of an Online Curriculum on High School Students' Understanding of Biological Evolution

    Science.gov (United States)

    Marsteller, Robert B.; Bodzin, Alec M.

    2015-12-01

    An online curriculum about biological evolution was designed to promote increased student content knowledge and evidentiary reasoning. A feasibility study was conducted with 77 rural high school biology students who learned with the online biological evolution unit. Data sources included the Biological Evolution Assessment Measure (BEAM), an analysis of discussion forum posts, and a post-implementation perceptions and attitudes questionnaire. BEAM posttest scores were significantly higher than the pretest scores. However, the findings revealed that the students required additional support to develop evidentiary reasoning. Many students perceived that the Web-based curriculum would have been enhanced by increased immediate interaction and feedback. Students required greater scaffolding to support complex, process-oriented tasks. Implications for designing Web-based science instruction with curriculum materials to support students' acquisition of content knowledge and science process skills in a Web-based setting are discussed.

  2. A Checklist for Successful Quantitative Live Cell Imaging in Systems Biology

    Science.gov (United States)

    Sung, Myong-Hee

    2013-01-01

    Mathematical modeling of signaling and gene regulatory networks has provided unique insights about systems behaviors for many cell biological problems of medical importance. Quantitative single cell monitoring has a crucial role in advancing systems modeling of molecular networks. However, due to the multidisciplinary techniques that are necessary for adaptation of such systems biology approaches, dissemination to a wide research community has been relatively slow. In this essay, I focus on some technical aspects that are often under-appreciated, yet critical in harnessing live cell imaging methods to achieve single-cell-level understanding and quantitative modeling of molecular networks. The importance of these technical considerations will be elaborated with examples of successes and shortcomings. Future efforts will benefit by avoiding some pitfalls and by utilizing the lessons collectively learned from recent applications of imaging in systems biology. PMID:24709701

  3. Enterobacter aerogenes Needle Stick Leads to Improved Biological Management System

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Johanson, Richard E.

    2004-08-01

    A laboratory worker who received a needle stick from a contaminated needle while working with a culture containing Enterobactor aerogenes developed a laboratory acquired infection. Although this organism has been shown to cause community and nosocomial infections, there have been no documented cases of a laboratory acquired infections. Lessons learned from the event led to corrective actions which included modification of lab procedures, development of a biological inventory tracking and risk identification system and the establishment of an effective biological safety program.

  4. Systems-biology dissection of eukaryotic cell growth

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Andrews Justen

    2010-05-01

    Full Text Available Abstract A recent article in BMC Biology illustrates the use of a systems-biology approach to integrate data across the transcriptome, proteome and metabolome of budding yeast in order to dissect the relationship between nutrient conditions and cell growth. See research article http://jbiol.com/content/6/2/4 and http://www.biomedcentral.com/1741-7007/8/68

  5. Modeling of biological intelligence for SCM system optimization.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Shengyong; Zheng, Yujun; Cattani, Carlo; Wang, Wanliang

    2012-01-01

    This article summarizes some methods from biological intelligence for modeling and optimization of supply chain management (SCM) systems, including genetic algorithms, evolutionary programming, differential evolution, swarm intelligence, artificial immune, and other biological intelligence related methods. An SCM system is adaptive, dynamic, open self-organizing, which is maintained by flows of information, materials, goods, funds, and energy. Traditional methods for modeling and optimizing complex SCM systems require huge amounts of computing resources, and biological intelligence-based solutions can often provide valuable alternatives for efficiently solving problems. The paper summarizes the recent related methods for the design and optimization of SCM systems, which covers the most widely used genetic algorithms and other evolutionary algorithms.

  6. Modeling of Biological Intelligence for SCM System Optimization

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Shengyong Chen

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available This article summarizes some methods from biological intelligence for modeling and optimization of supply chain management (SCM systems, including genetic algorithms, evolutionary programming, differential evolution, swarm intelligence, artificial immune, and other biological intelligence related methods. An SCM system is adaptive, dynamic, open self-organizing, which is maintained by flows of information, materials, goods, funds, and energy. Traditional methods for modeling and optimizing complex SCM systems require huge amounts of computing resources, and biological intelligence-based solutions can often provide valuable alternatives for efficiently solving problems. The paper summarizes the recent related methods for the design and optimization of SCM systems, which covers the most widely used genetic algorithms and other evolutionary algorithms.

  7. Modeling of Biological Intelligence for SCM System Optimization

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Shengyong; Zheng, Yujun; Cattani, Carlo; Wang, Wanliang

    2012-01-01

    This article summarizes some methods from biological intelligence for modeling and optimization of supply chain management (SCM) systems, including genetic algorithms, evolutionary programming, differential evolution, swarm intelligence, artificial immune, and other biological intelligence related methods. An SCM system is adaptive, dynamic, open self-organizing, which is maintained by flows of information, materials, goods, funds, and energy. Traditional methods for modeling and optimizing complex SCM systems require huge amounts of computing resources, and biological intelligence-based solutions can often provide valuable alternatives for efficiently solving problems. The paper summarizes the recent related methods for the design and optimization of SCM systems, which covers the most widely used genetic algorithms and other evolutionary algorithms. PMID:22162724

  8. Hepatocellular carcinoma: a systems biology perspective

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Lorenza Alice D'alessandro

    2013-02-01

    Full Text Available Hepatocellular carcinomas (HCC have different etiology and heterogenic genomic alterations lead to high complexity. The molecular features of HCC have largely been studied by gene expression and proteome profiling focusing on the correlations between the expression of specific markers and clinical data. Integration of the increasing amounts of data in databases has facilitated the link of genomic and proteomic profiles of HCC to disease state and clinical outcome. Despite the current knowledge, specific molecular markers remain to be identified and new strategies are required to establish novel targeted therapies. In the last years, mathematical models reconstructing gene and protein networks based on experimental data of HCC have been developed providing powerful tools to predict candidate interactions and potential targets for therapy. Furthermore, the combination of dynamic and logical mathematical models with quantitative data allows detailed mechanistic insights into system properties. To address effects at the organ level, mathematical models reconstructing the three-dimensional organization of liver lobules were developed. In the future, integration of different modeling approaches capturing the effects at the cellular up to the organ level is required to address the complex properties of HCC and to enable the discovery of new targets for HCC prevention or treatment.

  9. Structural Systems Biology Evaluation of Metabolic Thermotolerance in Escherichia coli

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Chang, Roger L.; Andrews, Kathleen; Kim, Donghyuk

    2013-01-01

    Improve the System A "systems biology" approach may clarify, for example, how particular proteins determine sensitivity of bacteria to extremes of temperature. Chang et al. (p. 1220) integrated information on protein structure with a model of metabolism, thus associating the protein structure of ...

  10. Life and Understanding: The Origins of "Understanding" in Self-Organizing Nervous Systems.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Yufik, Yan M; Friston, Karl

    2016-01-01

    This article is motivated by a formulation of biotic self-organization in Friston (2013), where the emergence of "life" in coupled material entities (e.g., macromolecules) was predicated on bounded subsets that maintain a degree of statistical independence from the rest of the network. Boundary elements in such systems constitute a Markov blanket ; separating the internal states of a system from its surrounding states. In this article, we ask whether Markov blankets operate in the nervous system and underlie the development of intelligence, enabling a progression from the ability to sense the environment to the ability to understand it. Markov blankets have been previously hypothesized to form in neuronal networks as a result of phase transitions that cause network subsets to fold into bounded assemblies, or packets (Yufik and Sheridan, 1997; Yufik, 1998a). The ensuing neuronal packets hypothesis builds on the notion of neuronal assemblies (Hebb, 1949, 1980), treating such assemblies as flexible but stable biophysical structures capable of withstanding entropic erosion. In other words, structures that maintain their integrity under changing conditions. In this treatment, neuronal packets give rise to perception of "objects"; i.e., quasi-stable (stimulus bound) feature groupings that are conserved over multiple presentations (e.g., the experience of perceiving "apple" can be interrupted and resumed many times). Monitoring the variations in such groups enables the apprehension of behavior; i.e., attributing to objects the ability to undergo changes without loss of self-identity. Ultimately, "understanding" involves self-directed composition and manipulation of the ensuing "mental models" that are constituted by neuronal packets, whose dynamics capture relationships among objects: that is, dependencies in the behavior of objects under varying conditions. For example, movement is known to involve rotation of population vectors in the motor cortex (Georgopoulos et al

  11. Understanding earth system models: how Global Sensitivity Analysis can help

    Science.gov (United States)

    Pianosi, Francesca; Wagener, Thorsten

    2017-04-01

    Computer models are an essential element of earth system sciences, underpinning our understanding of systems functioning and influencing the planning and management of socio-economic-environmental systems. Even when these models represent a relatively low number of physical processes and variables, earth system models can exhibit a complicated behaviour because of the high level of interactions between their simulated variables. As the level of these interactions increases, we quickly lose the ability to anticipate and interpret the model's behaviour and hence the opportunity to check whether the model gives the right response for the right reasons. Moreover, even if internally consistent, an earth system model will always produce uncertain predictions because it is often forced by uncertain inputs (due to measurement errors, pre-processing uncertainties, scarcity of measurements, etc.). Lack of transparency about the scope of validity, limitations and the main sources of uncertainty of earth system models can be a strong limitation to their effective use for both scientific and decision-making purposes. Global Sensitivity Analysis (GSA) is a set of statistical analysis techniques to investigate the complex behaviour of earth system models in a structured, transparent and comprehensive way. In this presentation, we will use a range of examples across earth system sciences (with a focus on hydrology) to demonstrate how GSA is a fundamental element in advancing the construction and use of earth system models, including: verifying the consistency of the model's behaviour with our conceptual understanding of the system functioning; identifying the main sources of output uncertainty so to focus efforts for uncertainty reduction; finding tipping points in forcing inputs that, if crossed, would bring the system to specific conditions we want to avoid.

  12. Understanding Global Change: Frameworks and Models for Teaching Systems Thinking

    Science.gov (United States)

    Bean, J. R.; Mitchell, K.; Zoehfeld, K.; Oshry, A.; Menicucci, A. J.; White, L. D.; Marshall, C. R.

    2017-12-01

    The scientific and education communities must impart to teachers, students, and the public an understanding of how the various factors that drive climate and global change operate, and why the rates and magnitudes of these changes related to human perturbation of Earth system processes today are cause for deep concern. Even though effective educational modules explaining components of the Earth and climate system exist, interdisciplinary learning tools are necessary to conceptually link the causes and consequences of global changes. To address this issue, the Understanding Global Change Project at the University of California Museum of Paleontology (UCMP) at UC Berkeley developed an interdisciplinary framework that organizes global change topics into three categories: (1) causes of climate change, both human and non-human (e.g., burning of fossil fuels, deforestation, Earth's tilt and orbit), (2) Earth system processes that shape the way the Earth works (e.g., Earth's energy budget, water cycle), and (3) the measurable changes in the Earth system (e.g., temperature, precipitation, ocean acidification). To facilitate student learning about the Earth as a dynamic, interacting system, a website will provide visualizations of Earth system models and written descriptions of how each framework topic is conceptually linked to other components of the framework. These visualizations and textual summarizations of relationships and feedbacks in the Earth system are a unique and crucial contribution to science communication and education, informed by a team of interdisciplinary scientists and educators. The system models are also mechanisms by which scientists can communicate how their own work informs our understanding of the Earth system. Educators can provide context and relevancy for authentic datasets and concurrently can assess student understanding of the interconnectedness of global change phenomena. The UGC resources will be available through a web-based platform and

  13. Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santello, Marco; Bianchi, Matteo; Gabiccini, Marco; Ricciardi, Emiliano; Salvietti, Gionata; Prattichizzo, Domenico; Ernst, Marc; Moscatelli, Alessandro; Jörntell, Henrik; Kappers, Astrid M. L.; Kyriakopoulos, Kostas; Albu-Schäffer, Alin; Castellini, Claudio; Bicchi, Antonio

    2016-07-01

    The term 'synergy' - from the Greek synergia - means 'working together'. The concept of multiple elements working together towards a common goal has been extensively used in neuroscience to develop theoretical frameworks, experimental approaches, and analytical techniques to understand neural control of movement, and for applications for neuro-rehabilitation. In the past decade, roboticists have successfully applied the framework of synergies to create novel design and control concepts for artificial hands, i.e., robotic hands and prostheses. At the same time, robotic research on the sensorimotor integration underlying the control and sensing of artificial hands has inspired new research approaches in neuroscience, and has provided useful instruments for novel experiments. The ambitious goal of integrating expertise and research approaches in robotics and neuroscience to study the properties and applications of the concept of synergies is generating a number of multidisciplinary cooperative projects, among which the recently finished 4-year European project ;The Hand Embodied; (THE). This paper reviews the main insights provided by this framework. Specifically, we provide an overview of neuroscientific bases of hand synergies and introduce how robotics has leveraged the insights from neuroscience for innovative design in hardware and controllers for biomedical engineering applications, including myoelectric hand prostheses, devices for haptics research, and wearable sensing of human hand kinematics. The review also emphasizes how this multidisciplinary collaboration has generated new ways to conceptualize a synergy-based approach for robotics, and provides guidelines and principles for analyzing human behavior and synthesizing artificial robotic systems based on a theory of synergies.

  14. A Framework for Understanding Post-Merger Information Systems Integration

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Alaranta, Maria; Kautz, Karlheinz

    2012-01-01

    that researchers and managers of post-merger IS integration should pay particular attention to the IS and organizational merger contexts; the need to build relationships and collaboration between the merging parties; power struggles; and, perhaps most importantly, understanding and treating post......This paper develops a theoretical framework for the integration of information systems (IS) after a merger or an acquisition. The framework integrates three perspectives: a structuralist, an individualist, and an interactive process perspective to analyze and understand such integrations....... The framework is applied to a longitudinal case study of a manufacturing company that grew through an acquisition. The management decided to integrate the production control IS via tailoring a new system that blends together features of existing IS. The application of the framework in the case study confirms...

  15. The Effects of Case-Based Instruction on Undergraduate Biology Students' Understanding of the Nature of Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Burniston, Amy Lucinda

    Undergraduate science education is currently seeing a dramatic pedagogical push towards teaching the philosophies underpinning science as well as an increase in strategies that employ active learning. Many active learning strategies stem from constructivist ideals and have been shown to affect a student's understanding of how science operates and its impact on society- commonly referred to as the nature of science (NOS). One particular constructivist teaching strategy, case-based instruction (CBI), has been recommended by researchers and science education reformists as an effective instructional strategy for teaching NOS. Furthermore, when coupled with explicit-reflective instruction, CBI has been found to significantly increasing understanding of NOS in elementary and secondary students. However, few studies aimed their research on CBI and NOS towards higher education. Thus, this study uses a quasi-experimental, nonequivalent group design to study the effects of CBI on undergraduate science students understandings of NOS. Undergraduate biology student's understanding of NOS were assessed using the Views of Science Education (VOSE) instrument pre and post CBI intervention in Cellular and Molecular Biology and Human Anatomy and Physiology II. Data analysis indicated statistically significant differences between students NOS scores in experimental versus control sections for both courses, with experimental groups obtaining higher posttest scores. The results of this study indicate that undergraduate male and female students have similarly poor understandings of NOS and the use of historical case based instruction can be used as a means to increase undergraduate understanding of NOS.

  16. Synthetic and systems biology for microbial production of commodity chemicals.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chubukov, Victor; Mukhopadhyay, Aindrila; Petzold, Christopher J; Keasling, Jay D; Martín, Héctor García

    2016-01-01

    The combination of synthetic and systems biology is a powerful framework to study fundamental questions in biology and produce chemicals of immediate practical application such as biofuels, polymers, or therapeutics. However, we cannot yet engineer biological systems as easily and precisely as we engineer physical systems. In this review, we describe the path from the choice of target molecule to scaling production up to commercial volumes. We present and explain some of the current challenges and gaps in our knowledge that must be overcome in order to bring our bioengineering capabilities to the level of other engineering disciplines. Challenges start at molecule selection, where a difficult balance between economic potential and biological feasibility must be struck. Pathway design and construction have recently been revolutionized by next-generation sequencing and exponentially improving DNA synthesis capabilities. Although pathway optimization can be significantly aided by enzyme expression characterization through proteomics, choosing optimal relative protein expression levels for maximum production is still the subject of heuristic, non-systematic approaches. Toxic metabolic intermediates and proteins can significantly affect production, and dynamic pathway regulation emerges as a powerful but yet immature tool to prevent it. Host engineering arises as a much needed complement to pathway engineering for high bioproduct yields; and systems biology approaches such as stoichiometric modeling or growth coupling strategies are required. A final, and often underestimated, challenge is the successful scale up of processes to commercial volumes. Sustained efforts in improving reproducibility and predictability are needed for further development of bioengineering.

  17. Learning (from) the errors of a systems biology model.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Engelhardt, Benjamin; Frőhlich, Holger; Kschischo, Maik

    2016-02-11

    Mathematical modelling is a labour intensive process involving several iterations of testing on real data and manual model modifications. In biology, the domain knowledge guiding model development is in many cases itself incomplete and uncertain. A major problem in this context is that biological systems are open. Missed or unknown external influences as well as erroneous interactions in the model could thus lead to severely misleading results. Here we introduce the dynamic elastic-net, a data driven mathematical method which automatically detects such model errors in ordinary differential equation (ODE) models. We demonstrate for real and simulated data, how the dynamic elastic-net approach can be used to automatically (i) reconstruct the error signal, (ii) identify the target variables of model error, and (iii) reconstruct the true system state even for incomplete or preliminary models. Our work provides a systematic computational method facilitating modelling of open biological systems under uncertain knowledge.

  18. Understanding Science: Frameworks for using stories to facilitate systems thinking

    Science.gov (United States)

    ElShafie, S. J.; Bean, J. R.

    2017-12-01

    Studies indicate that using a narrative structure for teaching and learning helps audiences to process and recall new information. Stories also help audiences retain specific information, such as character names or plot points, in the context of a broader narrative. Stories can therefore facilitate high-context systems learning in addition to low-context declarative learning. Here we incorporate a framework for science storytelling, which we use in communication workshops, with the Understanding Science framework developed by the UC Museum of Paleontology (UCMP) to explore the application of storytelling to systems thinking. We translate portions of the Understanding Science flowchart into narrative terms. Placed side by side, the two charts illustrate the parallels between the scientific process and the story development process. They offer a roadmap for developing stories about scientific studies and concepts. We also created a series of worksheets for use with the flowcharts. These new tools can generate stories from any perspective, including a scientist conducting a study; a character that plays a role in a larger system (e.g., foraminifera or a carbon atom); an entire system that interacts with other systems (e.g., the carbon cycle). We will discuss exemplar stories about climate change from each of these perspectives, which we are developing for workshops using content and storyboard models from the new UCMP website Understanding Global Change. This conceptual framework and toolkit will help instructors to develop stories about scientific concepts for use in a classroom setting. It will also help students to analyze stories presented in class, and to create their own stories about new concepts. This approach facilitates student metacognition of the learning process, and can also be used as a form of evaluation. We are testing this flowchart and its use in systems teaching with focus groups, in preparation for use in teacher professional development workshops.

  19. Systems biology of facial development: contributions of ectoderm and mesenchyme.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Hooper, Joan E; Feng, Weiguo; Li, Hong; Leach, Sonia M; Phang, Tzulip; Siska, Charlotte; Jones, Kenneth L; Spritz, Richard A; Hunter, Lawrence E; Williams, Trevor

    2017-06-01

    The rapid increase in gene-centric biological knowledge coupled with analytic approaches for genomewide data integration provides an opportunity to develop systems-level understanding of facial development. Experimental analyses have demonstrated the importance of signaling between the surface ectoderm and the underlying mesenchyme are coordinating facial patterning. However, current transcriptome data from the developing vertebrate face is dominated by the mesenchymal component, and the contributions of the ectoderm are not easily identified. We have generated transcriptome datasets from critical periods of mouse face formation that enable gene expression to be analyzed with respect to time, prominence, and tissue layer. Notably, by separating the ectoderm and mesenchyme we considerably improved the sensitivity compared to data obtained from whole prominences, with more genes detected over a wider dynamic range. From these data we generated a detailed description of ectoderm-specific developmental programs, including pan-ectodermal programs, prominence- specific programs and their temporal dynamics. The genes and pathways represented in these programs provide mechanistic insights into several aspects of ectodermal development. We also used these data to identify co-expression modules specific to facial development. We then used 14 co-expression modules enriched for genes involved in orofacial clefts to make specific mechanistic predictions about genes involved in tongue specification, in nasal process patterning and in jaw development. Our multidimensional gene expression dataset is a unique resource for systems analysis of the developing face; our co-expression modules are a resource for predicting functions of poorly annotated genes, or for predicting roles for genes that have yet to be studied in the context of facial development; and our analytic approaches provide a paradigm for analysis of other complex developmental programs. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc

  20. Understanding of the management information system based on MVC pattern

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Sida

    2018-04-01

    With the development of the society, people have come to realize the significance of information, not only linguistically but also in the written form. To build an effective and efficient working flow, a new subject called Management Information System (MIS) came up. MIS is an integrated discipline, which utilizes comprehensive and systematical methods to manage information, and it enhances the work efficiency through building structured information platform. This paper demonstrates the Management Information System from shallow too deep with the understanding of MVC pattern, including its basic structure and application with ASP.NET. Also some discussions about its features are made in the last section.

  1. Recent Understanding on Diagnosis and Management of Central Nervous System Vasculitis in Children

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Ludovico Iannetti

    2012-01-01

    Full Text Available Central nervous system vasculitides in children may develop as a primary condition or secondary to an underlying systemic disease. Many vasculitides affect both adults and children, while some others occur almost exclusively in childhood. Patients usually present with systemic symptoms with single or multiorgan dysfunction. The involvement of central nervous system in childhood is not frequent and it occurs more often as a feature of subtypes like childhood polyarteritis nodosa, Kawasaki disease, Henoch Schönlein purpura, and Bechet disease. Primary angiitis of the central nervous system of childhood is a reversible cause of severe neurological impairment, including acute ischemic stroke, intractable seizures, and cognitive decline. The first line therapy of CNS vasculitides is mainly based on corticosteroids and immunosuppressor drugs. Other strategies include plasmapheresis, immunoglobulins, and biologic drugs. This paper discusses on current understanding of most frequent primary and secondary central nervous system vasculitides in children including a tailored-diagnostic approach and new evidence regarding treatment.

  2. Recent Understanding on Diagnosis and Management of Central Nervous System Vasculitis in Children

    Science.gov (United States)

    Iannetti, Ludovico; Zito, Roberta; Bruschi, Simone; Papetti, Laura; Ulgiati, Fiorenza; Nicita, Francesco; Del Balzo, Francesca; Spalice, Alberto

    2012-01-01

    Central nervous system vasculitides in children may develop as a primary condition or secondary to an underlying systemic disease. Many vasculitides affect both adults and children, while some others occur almost exclusively in childhood. Patients usually present with systemic symptoms with single or multiorgan dysfunction. The involvement of central nervous system in childhood is not frequent and it occurs more often as a feature of subtypes like childhood polyarteritis nodosa, Kawasaki disease, Henoch Schönlein purpura, and Bechet disease. Primary angiitis of the central nervous system of childhood is a reversible cause of severe neurological impairment, including acute ischemic stroke, intractable seizures, and cognitive decline. The first line therapy of CNS vasculitides is mainly based on corticosteroids and immunosuppressor drugs. Other strategies include plasmapheresis, immunoglobulins, and biologic drugs. This paper discusses on current understanding of most frequent primary and secondary central nervous system vasculitides in children including a tailored-diagnostic approach and new evidence regarding treatment. PMID:23008735

  3. Standards, Data Exchange and Intellectual Property Rights in Systems Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    van Zimmeren, Esther; Rutz, Berthold; Minssen, Timo

    2016-01-01

    and qualitative data on biological processes and activities in much greater volumes, velocity, variety and veracity. The skilful integration of multiple heterogeneous data sets allows scientists to model and predict biological processes. SysBio’s interdisciplinary nature requires data, models and other research...... we provided a number of recommendations for a variety of stakeholders. The current article offers some deeper reflections about the interface between IPRs, standards and data exchange in Systems Biology resulting from an Expert Meeting funded by another ERA-Net, ERASysAPP. The meeting brought...... assets to be formatted and described in standard ways to enable exchange and reuse of high quality data. This allows a more effective utilisation of the enormous potential that rests in “big data” analysis. Finally, SysBio is often closely linked to or provides the foundation for Synthetic Biology (Syn...

  4. Recent developments in systems biology and metabolic engineering of plant microbe interactions

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Vishal Kumar

    2016-09-01

    Full Text Available Microorganisms play a crucial role in the sustainability of the various ecosystems. The characterization of various interactions between microorganisms and other biotic factors is a necessary footstep to understand the association and functions of microbial communities. Among the different microbial interactions in an ecosystem, plant-microbe interaction plays an important role to balance the ecosystem. The present review explores plant microbe interactions using gene editing and system biology tools towards the comprehension in improvement of plant traits. Further, system biology tools like FBA, OptKnock and constrain based modeling helps in understanding such interactions as a whole. In addition, various gene editing tools have been summarized and a strategy has been hypothesized for the development of disease free plants. Furthermore, we have tried to summarize the predictions through data retrieved from various types of sources such as high throughput sequencing data (e.g. single nucleotide polymorphism (SNP detection, RNA-seq, proteomics and metabolic models have been reconstructed from such sequences for species communities. It is well known fact that systems biology approaches and modeling of biological networks will enable us to learn the insight of such network and will also help further in understanding these interactions.

  5. Advances on plant-pathogen interactions from molecular toward systems biology perspectives.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Peyraud, Rémi; Dubiella, Ullrich; Barbacci, Adelin; Genin, Stéphane; Raffaele, Sylvain; Roby, Dominique

    2017-05-01

    In the past 2 decades, progress in molecular analyses of the plant immune system has revealed key elements of a complex response network. Current paradigms depict the interaction of pathogen-secreted molecules with host target molecules leading to the activation of multiple plant response pathways. Further research will be required to fully understand how these responses are integrated in space and time, and exploit this knowledge in agriculture. In this review, we highlight systems biology as a promising approach to reveal properties of molecular plant-pathogen interactions and predict the outcome of such interactions. We first illustrate a few key concepts in plant immunity with a network and systems biology perspective. Next, we present some basic principles of systems biology and show how they allow integrating multiomics data and predict cell phenotypes. We identify challenges for systems biology of plant-pathogen interactions, including the reconstruction of multiscale mechanistic models and the connection of host and pathogen models. Finally, we outline studies on resistance durability through the robustness of immune system networks, the identification of trade-offs between immunity and growth and in silico plant-pathogen co-evolution as exciting perspectives in the field. We conclude that the development of sophisticated models of plant diseases incorporating plant, pathogen and climate properties represent a major challenge for agriculture in the future. © 2016 The Authors. The Plant Journal published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd and Society for Experimental Biology.

  6. Strategies for structuring interdisciplinary education in Systems Biology

    DEFF Research Database (Denmark)

    Cvijovic, Marija; Höfer, Thomas; Aćimović, Jure

    2016-01-01

    function by employing experimental data, mathematical models and computational simulations. As Systems Biology is inherently multidisciplinary, education within this field meets numerous hurdles including departmental barriers, availability of all required expertise locally, appropriate teaching material...... internationally. We believe that one of the overriding goals of any Systems Biology education should be a student’s ability to phrase and communicate research questions in such a manner that they can be solved by the integration of experiments and modelling, as well as to communicate and collaborate productively...

  7. Inorganic concepts relevant to metal binding, activity, and toxicity in a biological system

    Energy Technology Data Exchange (ETDEWEB)

    Hoeschele, J.D. (Warner-Lambert Co., Ann Arbor, MI (USA). Parke-Davis Pharmaceutical Research Div.); Turner, J.E.; England, M.W. (Oak Ridge National Lab., TN (USA))

    1990-01-01

    The purpose of this paper is to review selected physical and inorganic concepts and factors which might be important in assessing and/or understanding the fact and disposition of a metal system in a biological environment. Hopefully, such inquiries will ultimately permit us to understand, rationalize, and predict differences and trends in biological effects as a function of the basic nature of a metal system and, in optimal cases, serve as input to a system of guidelines for the notion of Chemical Dosimetry.'' The plan of this paper is to first review, in general terms, the basic principles of the Crystal Field Theory (CFT), a unifying theory of bonding in metal complexes. This will provide the necessary theoretical background for the subsequent discussion of selected concepts and factors. 21 refs., 7 figs., 6 tabs.

  8. A data integration approach for cell cycle analysis oriented to model simulation in systems biology

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Mosca Ettore

    2007-08-01

    Full Text Available Abstract Background The cell cycle is one of the biological processes most frequently investigated in systems biology studies and it involves the knowledge of a large number of genes and networks of protein interactions. A deep knowledge of the molecular aspect of this biological process can contribute to making cancer research more accurate and innovative. In this context the mathematical modelling of the cell cycle has a relevant role to quantify the behaviour of each component of the systems. The mathematical modelling of a biological process such as the cell cycle allows a systemic description that helps to highlight some features such as emergent properties which could be hidden when the analysis is performed only from a reductionism point of view. Moreover, in modelling complex systems, a complete annotation of all the components is equally important to understand the interaction mechanism inside the network: for this reason data integration of the model components has high relevance in systems biology studies. Description In this work, we present a resource, the Cell Cycle Database, intended to support systems biology analysis on the Cell Cycle process, based on two organisms, yeast and mammalian. The database integrates information about genes and proteins involved in the cell cycle process, stores complete models of the interaction networks and allows the mathematical simulation over time of the quantitative behaviour of each component. To accomplish this task, we developed, a web interface for browsing information related to cell cycle genes, proteins and mathematical models. In this framework, we have implemented a pipeline which allows users to deal with the mathematical part of the models, in order to solve, using different variables, the ordinary differential equation systems that describe the biological process. Conclusion This integrated system is freely available in order to support systems biology research on the cell cycle and

  9. Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santello, Marco; Bianchi, Matteo; Gabiccini, Marco; Ricciardi, Emiliano; Salvietti, Gionata; Prattichizzo, Domenico; Ernst, Marc; Moscatelli, Alessandro; Jörntell, Henrik; Kappers, Astrid M.L.; Kyriakopoulos, Kostas; Albu-Schäffer, Alin; Castellini, Claudio; Bicchi, Antonio

    2017-01-01

    The term ‘synergy’ – from the Greek synergia – means ‘working together’. The concept of multiple elements working together towards a common goal has been extensively used in neuroscience to develop theoretical frameworks, experimental approaches, and analytical techniques to understand neural control of movement, and for applications for neuro-rehabilitation. In the past decade, roboticists have successfully applied the framework of synergies to create novel design and control concepts for artificial hands, i.e., robotic hands and prostheses. At the same time, robotic research on the sensorimotor integration underlying the control and sensing of artificial hands has inspired new research approaches in neuroscience, and has provided useful instruments for novel experiments. The ambitious goal of integrating expertise and research approaches in robotics and neuroscience to study the properties and applications of the concept of synergies is generating a number of multidisciplinary cooperative projects, among which the recently finished 4-year European project “The Hand Embodied” (THE). This paper reviews the main insights provided by this framework. Specifically, we provide an overview of neuroscientific bases of hand synergies and introduce how robotics has leveraged the insights from neuroscience for innovative design in hardware and controllers for biomedical engineering applications, including myoelectric hand prostheses, devices for haptics research, and wearable sensing of human hand kinematics. The review also emphasizes how this multidisciplinary collaboration has generated new ways to conceptualize a synergy-based approach for robotics, and provides guidelines and principles for analyzing human behavior and synthesizing artificial robotic systems based on a theory of synergies. PMID:26923030

  10. Hand synergies: Integration of robotics and neuroscience for understanding the control of biological and artificial hands.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Santello, Marco; Bianchi, Matteo; Gabiccini, Marco; Ricciardi, Emiliano; Salvietti, Gionata; Prattichizzo, Domenico; Ernst, Marc; Moscatelli, Alessandro; Jörntell, Henrik; Kappers, Astrid M L; Kyriakopoulos, Kostas; Albu-Schäffer, Alin; Castellini, Claudio; Bicchi, Antonio

    2016-07-01

    The term 'synergy' - from the Greek synergia - means 'working together'. The concept of multiple elements working together towards a common goal has been extensively used in neuroscience to develop theoretical frameworks, experimental approaches, and analytical techniques to understand neural control of movement, and for applications for neuro-rehabilitation. In the past decade, roboticists have successfully applied the framework of synergies to create novel design and control concepts for artificial hands, i.e., robotic hands and prostheses. At the same time, robotic research on the sensorimotor integration underlying the control and sensing of artificial hands has inspired new research approaches in neuroscience, and has provided useful instruments for novel experiments. The ambitious goal of integrating expertise and research approaches in robotics and neuroscience to study the properties and applications of the concept of synergies is generating a number of multidisciplinary cooperative projects, among which the recently finished 4-year European project "The Hand Embodied" (THE). This paper reviews the main insights provided by this framework. Specifically, we provide an overview of neuroscientific bases of hand synergies and introduce how robotics has leveraged the insights from neuroscience for innovative design in hardware and controllers for biomedical engineering applications, including myoelectric hand prostheses, devices for haptics research, and wearable sensing of human hand kinematics. The review also emphasizes how this multidisciplinary collaboration has generated new ways to conceptualize a synergy-based approach for robotics, and provides guidelines and principles for analyzing human behavior and synthesizing artificial robotic systems based on a theory of synergies. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Perceptual Influence of Ugandan Biology Students' Understanding of HIV/AIDS

    Science.gov (United States)

    Mutonyi, Harriet; Nashon, Samson; Nielsen, Wendy S.

    2010-01-01

    In Uganda, curbing the spread of HIV/AIDS has largely depended on public and private media messages about the disease. Media campaigns based on Uganda's cultural norms of communication are metaphorical, analogical and simile-like. The topic of HIV/AIDS has been introduced into the Senior Three (Grade 11) biology curriculum in Uganda. To what…

  12. Inherit the Policy: A Sociocultural Approach to Understanding Evolutionary Biology Policy in South Carolina

    Science.gov (United States)

    Moore, Gregory D.

    2012-01-01

    South Carolina biology Indicator 5.6 calls for students to "Summarize ways that scientists use data from a variety of sources to investigate and critically analyze aspects of evolutionary theory" (South Carolina Department of Education, 2006). Levinson and Sutton (2001) offered a sociocultural approach to policy that considers cultural…

  13. Taiwan High School Biology Teachers' Acceptance and Understanding of Evolution and the Nature of Science

    Science.gov (United States)

    Chen, Li-Hua

    2015-01-01

    Evolution is the cornerstone of biological sciences, but anti-evolution teaching has become a global controversy since the introduction of evolutionary ideas into the United States high school science curricula in 1914. It is suggested that teachers' attitude toward and acceptance of the theory of evolution will influence their effect of teaching…

  14. Understanding the Information Needs of Academic Scholars in Agricultural and Biological Sciences

    Science.gov (United States)

    Kuruppu, Pali U.; Gruber, Anne Marie

    2006-01-01

    This study investigates the information needs of faculty and graduate students in agricultural and biological sciences. Qualitative research methods, interviews and focus groups, were used to examine what types of information these scholars need for their research, teaching and learning, how they seek that information, and perceptions. The…

  15. Developing integrated TOF-SIMS/MALDI IMS system in studying biological systems

    Science.gov (United States)

    Wu, Ligang

    Using imaging mass spectrometry (IMS) techniques (including TOF-SIMS and MALDI IMS) to study biological systems is a relatively new concept and quickly gained popularity in recent years. Imaging mass spectrometry is a discovery technology that utilizes a focused ion beam or laser beam to desorb ions from sample surface. By detecting the desorbed ions, the chemical distributions and biological changes of a sample surface can be analyzed. These techniques offer a new analytical imaging approach to investigate biological processes at the cellular and tissue level. In this research, a novel integrated TOF-SIMS/MALDI IMS system as well as IMS based biological-sample-preparation techniques and data-reduction methods are developed. We then demonstrate the power of these techniques in studying different biological systems, including monosaccharides isomers, human breast cancer cell lines, mouse embryo tissues and mouse kidney sections. Using TOF-SIMS and statistical analysis methods, seven monosaccharide isomers are fully differentiated by analyzing their characteristic spectral pattern. In addition, a deep understanding of the fragmentation pathway of these isomers under ion bombardment is gained. In an application of TOF-SIMS to the differentiation of three human breast cancer cell lines, MCF-7, T47D, and MDA-MB-231, we show that principal component analysis (PCA) data reduction of TOF-SIMS spectra can differentiate cellular compartments (cytosol, nuclear and particulate) within the cell types, as well as homogenates from among the three cell lines. In a tissue-specific application, we extend the analytical capabilities of TOF-SIMS and PCA by imaging and differentiating Formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) mouse embryo tissues. We demonstrate reproducible differentiation of six tissue types based on the remaining small molecules after paraffin-embedding and the fragments of the cellular proteins. In a unique study of fresh frozen mouse kidney tissues, both TOF

  16. Study on supporting system for operator's comprehensive understanding

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Yoshikawa, Shinji

    1996-01-01

    Power Reactor and Nuclear Fuel Development Corp. has participated in the development of a system to support the process of operator's plant understanding by the use of information processing techniques such as artificial intelligence since 1994. Analysis and model formation of the process leading to operator's comprehensive understanding of plant (mental model) are undertaken attempting to determine the basic structure of the mental model available for the description of knowledge using the precedent survey and to observe how to utilize operator's own knowledge. After consideration of the way by which plant operators utilize their physical knowledges and the knowledges of physical observation in practice, a basic structure composed of 3 components a qualitative causal network, a hierarchical function model and 3 links joining the two was proposed for the mental model. A questionnaire survey on operator's statements was made and the contents were assigned in several categories for objective analysis. An unified form usable to make a data base was established. Further, we have a plan to develop the first proto-type system to promote operator's understanding by 1998. (M.N.)

  17. A distributed approach for parameters estimation in System Biology models

    International Nuclear Information System (INIS)

    Mosca, E.; Merelli, I.; Alfieri, R.; Milanesi, L.

    2009-01-01

    Due to the lack of experimental measurements, biological variability and experimental errors, the value of many parameters of the systems biology mathematical models is yet unknown or uncertain. A possible computational solution is the parameter estimation, that is the identification of the parameter values that determine the best model fitting respect to experimental data. We have developed an environment to distribute each run of the parameter estimation algorithm on a different computational resource. The key feature of the implementation is a relational database that allows the user to swap the candidate solutions among the working nodes during the computations. The comparison of the distributed implementation with the parallel one showed that the presented approach enables a faster and better parameter estimation of systems biology models.

  18. The Metals in the Biological Periodic System of the Elements: Concepts and Conjectures

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Wolfgang Maret

    2016-01-01

    Full Text Available A significant number of chemical elements are either essential for life with known functions, or present in organisms with poorly defined functional outcomes. We do not know all the essential elements with certainty and we know even less about the functions of apparently non-essential elements. In this article, I discuss a basis for a biological periodic system of the elements and that biochemistry should include the elements that are traditionally part of inorganic chemistry and not only those that are in the purview of organic chemistry. A biological periodic system of the elements needs to specify what “essential” means and to which biological species it refers. It represents a snapshot of our present knowledge and is expected to undergo further modifications in the future. An integrated approach of biometal sciences called metallomics is required to understand the interactions of metal ions, the biological functions that their chemical structures acquire in the biological system, and how their usage is fine-tuned in biological species and in populations of species with genetic variations (the variome.

  19. System Behaviour Charts Inform an Understanding of Biodiversity Recovery

    Directory of Open Access Journals (Sweden)

    Simon A. Black

    2015-01-01

    Full Text Available Practitioners working with species and ecosystem recovery typically deal with the complexity of, on one hand, lack of data or data uncertainties and, on the other hand, demand for critical decision-making and intervention. The control chart methods of commercial and industrial and environmental monitoring can complement an ecological understanding of wildlife systems including those situations which incorporate human activities and land use. Systems Behaviour Charts are based upon well-established control chart methods to provide conservation managers with an approach to using existing data and enable insight to aid timely planning of conservation interventions and also complement and stimulate research into wider scientific and ecological questions. When the approach is applied to existing data sets in well-known wildlife conservation cases, the subsequent Systems Behaviour Charts and associated analytical criteria demonstrate insights which would be helpful in averting problems associated with each case example.

  20. Current understanding of interactions between nanoparticles and the immune system.

    Science.gov (United States)

    Dobrovolskaia, Marina A; Shurin, Michael; Shvedova, Anna A

    2016-05-15

    The delivery of drugs, antigens, and imaging agents benefits from using nanotechnology-based carriers. The successful translation of nanoformulations to the clinic involves thorough assessment of their safety profiles, which, among other end-points, includes evaluation of immunotoxicity. The past decade of research focusing on nanoparticle interaction with the immune system has been fruitful in terms of understanding the basics of nanoparticle immunocompatibility, developing a bioanalytical infrastructure to screen for nanoparticle-mediated immune reactions, beginning to uncover the mechanisms of nanoparticle immunotoxicity, and utilizing current knowledge about the structure-activity relationship between nanoparticles' physicochemical properties and their effects on the immune system to guide safe drug delivery. In the present review, we focus on the most prominent pieces of the nanoparticle-immune system puzzle and discuss the achievements, disappointments, and lessons learned over the past 15years of research on the immunotoxicity of engineered nanomaterials. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.