Antagonistic regulation and the mesoscopic organization of biological systems

13 Mar 2015

Juan Poyatos
Spanish National Research Council (CNB-CSIC)
Madrid, Spain


Recent research in computational and systems biology has contributed to simplify in part biological complexity. This is connected to the discovery of the presence of recurrent building blocks in biological systems, e.g., the reappearance of specific DNA regulatory sequences in the genome, or particular control motifs within biochemical networks. However, characterising some sort of "mesoscopic complexity" from these basic constituents is usually not easy, and often leads to surprises. In my talk, I will discuss explicitly how two network motifs that enable contrasting behaviours in isolation can appear combined. This example will illustrate more broadly how tradeoffs associated to antagonistic regulatory motifs can be resolved, and how this in turn critically depends on the nonlinearities exhibited by the conflicting regulatory circuits involved.

current theory lunch schedule