Tuesday, February 24, 2009

IMCM [0]: Proposal of a new project "Integrative Model of Cell Migration"

In biophysics, systems are overwhelmingly complex. There are so many possibly relevant - yet not precisely known - interactions between the components that one cannot simply attempt to compute the "properties of the given system". There is no well-defined system to start with !

In order to ask meaningful questions, biologists have long ago learned to focus on purpose and function. Once you know the useful function a system is supposed to perform, you get some idea which components and interactions might be absolutely relevant for that purpose and which are only of secondary importance.

For this reason, I believe that also in the field of cell mechanics, an integrative, function-oriented model would be very useful, no matter how simplistic. Such a functional multi-scale model should, in particular, make a logical connection between molecular reactions, cytoskeletal reorganizations at the mesoscopic level, and the final goal of a cell: to migrate and navigate in a complex environment.

My title for this new project will be "Integrative Model of Cell Migration". The posts related to the project will be denoted by IMCM [number].

IMCM will be minimalistic. Its main purpose is to provide a concrete visual model as a basis for further discussion. It will produce testable predictions and, hopefully, induce many new questions.

My ideas about the design of IMCM will be described in the following posts.


No comments:

Post a Comment