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Smallest self replicating organism

Des Higgins fatherdes at eircom.net
Sun Sep 9 14:19:29 EST 2001

"Rich Cooper" <richcooper1 at mindspring.com> wrote in message
news:9n9d3t$q0$1 at mercury.hgmp.mrc.ac.uk...
> Des Higgins wrote:
> > A real software model of any organism would be enormously useful and
> > everyone would use it.  The problem tends to be that it is extremely
> > difficult to simulate even a small part of what really happens inside a
> > cell.   We are no where near being able to make even a crude model of
> >
> > Des Higgins
> When I look at M..g. databases such as
> http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/Entrez/altik?gi=26&db=G
> It appears that there is a lot of genome knowledge available.  Of course,
> the protein functions aren't so well developed yet, but sites like
> http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/COG/palox?fun=all
> indicate that progress is being made on protein functions.
> But very few pathways are known, 52 if I interpret the data correctly.
> The systems biology work going on now has resulted in a preliminary
> spec for systems biology modeling language (SBML) that looks like
> a very feasible way to represent biochemical reactions, and to make
> the models available to anyone researching a similar topic.  So if those
> 52 pathways were written as reaction models in SBML, simulation
> software could read the SBML and peform the simulation, letting
> people modify the model to fit their research interests.
> Of those 52 that are known, a simulation could be built in principle, but
> would that small slice of the organism be useful in itself?  That is,
> who would use it, and how much value would they get out of it.  Would
> the benefit outweigh the cost of developing such a model and a
> simulation engine?

I do not know; as a gut reaction, my guess is that people have tried this
(or similar simulations) already and it is too crude to be of any predictive
value as yet.

Des Higgins

> -Rich Cooper


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