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Wednesday, May 06, 2009
2:00 PM - 3:00 PM
CNLS Conference Room (TA-3, Bldg 1690)


A Canonical Nonlinear Formalism: Several perspectives, Opportunities and Challenges

Michael Savageau
University of California, Davis

Is there a common mathematical structure underlying the representation of biological systems at some level? Or must each system be treated in an ad hoc fashion according to whatever representation the system itself suggests? Such questions have implications for the generality of our understanding that is derived from the analysis of specific systems. Aside from questions about general rules and design principles in biology, there can be practical advantages to identifying a canonical structure. Historically such structures have led to the development of powerful mathematical tools with broad applicability. I will present a candidate nonlinear formalism, which emerged from biochemical considerations, that can be considered canonical from several perspectives, that has provided an efficient basis for ODE solvers and root finders, and that appears to offer a broad range of opportunities and challenges.

Host: Robert Ecke, T-CNLS