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  • Convergent Revolution

    Evolutionary Systems Biology

    Convergent Revolution

    Evolutionary Systems Biology

    Speakers: Aviv Bergman (Albert Einstein College of Medicine), Mark L. Siegal (New York University), Franziska Michor (Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center)Presented by the Systems Biology Discussion Group
    Reported by Don Monroe | Posted August 13, 2008

    Evolutionary theory and systems biology have both transformed the understanding of biology, the first over many decades and the second more recently. A July 1, 2008, symposium sponsored by the Systems Biology Discussion Group illuminated what these fields have to offer each other by highlighting research in evolutionary systems biology.

    Aviv Bergman presented work showing that the biological networks that emerge during evolution have special properties, including a high degree of robustness against external and internal variability. Morphological variation in knockout yeast, analyzed by Mark Siegel's lab, revealed hundreds of "phenotypic capacitor" genes that unleash variation when they are impaired. Franziska Michor showed that the time response to chemotherapy for chronic myeloid leukemia suggests that a subpopulation of cells consisting of cancer stem cells evades the treatment.

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