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PHYS 597A: Graphs and networks in systems biology Spring 2008

Summary: PHYS 597A: Graphs and networks in systems biology
Spring 2008
T Th 9:45 - 11:00 am
103 Osmond Laboratory
Lecturer: R´eka Albert Co-lecturer: Juilee Thakar
Email: ralbert@phys.psu.edu Email: jthakar@phys.psu.edu
Office: 122 Davey Laboratory Office: 121 Davey Laboratory
Office hours: by appointment Office hours: by appointment
Many complex systems are difficult to describe and understand because they are com-
posed of large numbers of elements interacting in a non-ordered way. A good example is
cellular biology: diverse cellular components (genes, proteins, enzymes) participate in various
reactions and regulatory interactions, forming a robust system. A very useful representation
of complex systems is given by graphs (or networks), where we denote the components with
nodes and their interactions by edges. The properties of these interaction graphs can then
be analyzed by graph theoretical and statistical mechanics methods and this information
can lead to important conclusions about the possible dynamical behaviors of the system.
This class will focus on four main questions:
(i) How do we determine or infer the interaction graphs underlying complex systems?
(ii) How can we characterize the organizational features of large-scale networks?
(iii) What are the mechanisms that determine the common topological features of a wide


Source: Albert, Réka - Departments of Biology & Physics, Pennsylvania State University


Collections: Biology and Medicine