CUED Publications database

Constraints on Fluctuations in Sparsely Characterized Biological Systems

Hilfinger, A and Norman, TM and Vinnicombe, G and Paulsson, J (2016) Constraints on Fluctuations in Sparsely Characterized Biological Systems. Physical Review Letters, 116. 058101-. ISSN 0031-9007

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Biochemical processes are inherently stochastic, creating molecular fluctuations in otherwise identical cells. Such "noise" is widespread but has proven difficult to analyze because most systems are sparsely characterized at the single cell level and because nonlinear stochastic models are analytically intractable. Here, we exactly relate average abundances, lifetimes, step sizes, and covariances for any pair of components in complex stochastic reaction systems even when the dynamics of other components are left unspecified. Using basic mathematical inequalities, we then establish bounds for whole classes of systems. These bounds highlight fundamental trade-offs that show how efficient assembly processes must invariably exhibit large fluctuations in subunit levels and how eliminating fluctuations in one cellular component requires creating heterogeneity in another.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Models, Biological Nonlinear Dynamics RNA, Messenger Stochastic Processes Systems Biology
Divisions: Div F > Control
Depositing User: Cron Job
Date Deposited: 17 Jul 2017 19:40
Last Modified: 09 Sep 2021 00:37
DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.116.058101