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Cell signaling: a systems approach

  • Pontus Melke
Publiceringsår: 2010
Språk: Engelska
Dokumenttyp: Doktorsavhandling


All higher functions of the cell are dependent on cell signaling. It is the way of the cell to obtain information

about the world surrounding it. By getting information on e.g. temperature, glucose concentrations, or the

density of neighboring cells, the cell can make decisions on how to optimally act given the supplied information.

Even though cells are very different, some of the basic mechanisms governing the signaling are the same

everywhere – from the most simple single-cellular bacteria to the cells we find in our bodies.

In this thesis we will study cell signaling in three different types of cells: in Paper I we study the TGF-β pathway

in endothelial mammal cells, in Paper II and Paper III the biofilm formation and quorum sensing of bacterial

cells, and in Paper IV plant stem cells. We use a combination of rate-equation models, mechanical cell-based

models, and statistical tools to study the dynamics of these networks. By this approach we can find and validate

hypotheses in cases where mere biological intuition is not enough. We can also indentify key components and

modules of the systems, and predict quantities not yet measured. This provides a work flow where the model

is set up to test hypotheses against available data, the model suggests new experiments which later can be used

to further improve the model. The approach of combining experimental data with mathematical modeling has

proven to be very fruitful for the understanding of many biological systems.


Sal F, Sölvegatan 14A
  • Petros Koumoutsakos


  • Biophysics


  • Henrik Jönsson
  • ISBN: 978-91-628-8035-4

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