Master Equation: Biological Applications and Thermodynamic Description

De Oliveira, Luciana Renata (2014) Master Equation: Biological Applications and Thermodynamic Description, [Dissertation thesis], Alma Mater Studiorum Università di Bologna. Dottorato di ricerca in Fisica, 26 Ciclo. DOI 10.6092/unibo/amsdottorato/6214.
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It is well known that many realistic mathematical models of biological systems, such as cell growth, cellular development and differentiation, gene expression, gene regulatory networks, enzyme cascades, synaptic plasticity, aging and population growth need to include stochasticity. These systems are not isolated, but rather subject to intrinsic and extrinsic fluctuations, which leads to a quasi equilibrium state (homeostasis). The natural framework is provided by Markov processes and the Master equation (ME) describes the temporal evolution of the probability of each state, specified by the number of units of each species. The ME is a relevant tool for modeling realistic biological systems and allow also to explore the behavior of open systems. These systems may exhibit not only the classical thermodynamic equilibrium states but also the nonequilibrium steady states (NESS). This thesis deals with biological problems that can be treat with the Master equation and also with its thermodynamic consequences. It is organized into six chapters with four new scientific works, which are grouped in two parts: (1) Biological applications of the Master equation: deals with the stochastic properties of a toggle switch, involving a protein compound and a miRNA cluster, known to control the eukaryotic cell cycle and possibly involved in oncogenesis and with the propose of a one parameter family of master equations for the evolution of a population having the logistic equation as mean field limit. (2) Nonequilibrium thermodynamics in terms of the Master equation: where we study the dynamical role of chemical fluxes that characterize the NESS of a chemical network and we propose a one parameter parametrization of BCM learning, that was originally proposed to describe plasticity processes, to study the differences between systems in DB and NESS.

Tipologia del documento
Tesi di dottorato
De Oliveira, Luciana Renata
Dottorato di ricerca
Scuola di dottorato
Scienze matematiche, fisiche ed astronomiche
Settore disciplinare
Settore concorsuale
Parole chiave
Master equation; Nonequilibrium thermodynamics
Data di discussione
24 Marzo 2014

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