Molecular interactions within the cell: Network, Scale, and Complexity
Biological processes can be characterized by different degrees of complexity at microscopic (genes, molecules), mesoscopic (protein-DNA complexes) and macroscopic (cells, organisms) levels. Historically, all biological systems have been studied at different levels. However, an increasing amount of experimental results and theoretical studies suggest that a more comprehensive system approach would tackle better biological problems. It would require a collaboration and intensive exchange between experimental and theoretical researchers from physics, chemistry, biology, mathematics, computer science, and engineering. The MBI’s 2009-2010 activities will focus on the following fundamental questions: What are the properties of biological networks? How do they function? How do genes come together to form networks, and how can we use bioinformatics to discover such networks? Can our understanding of the fundamental mathematics inform the design of those bioinformatics methods? How is information transferred in cells? What role can synthetic biology perform in aiding our understanding of real life processes? How can different subjects of biological systems interact together to create effective dynamic systems?