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Experimental visceral leishmaniasis, caused by infection of mice with the protozoan parasite Leishmania donovani, is characterized by focal accumulation of inflammatory cells in the liver, forming discrete "granulomas" within which the parasite is eventually eliminated. To shed new light on fundamental aspects of granuloma formation and function, we have… (More)
The complexity of signalling pathways was boosted at the origin of the vertebrates, when two rounds of whole genome duplication (2R-WGD) occurred. Those genes and proteins that have survived from the 2R-WGD—termed 2R-ohnologues—belong to families of two to four members, and are enriched in signalling components relevant to cancer. Here, we find that while… (More)
To prevent rereplication of genomic segments, the eukaryotic cell cycle is divided into two nonoverlapping phases. During late mitosis and G1 replication origins are "licensed" by loading MCM2-7 double hexamers and during S phase licensed replication origins activate to initiate bidirectional replication forks. Replication forks can stall irreversibly, and… (More)
The gene regulatory network (GRN) is the central decision-making module of the cell. We have developed a theory called Buffered Qualitative Stability (BQS) based on the hypothesis that GRNs are organised so that they remain robust in the face of unpredictable environmental and evolutionary changes. BQS makes strong and diverse predictions about the network… (More)
The replication of DNA is initiated at particular sites on the genome called replication origins (ROs). Understanding the constraints that regulate the distribution of ROs across different organisms is fundamental for quantifying the degree of replication errors and their downstream consequences. Using a simple probabilistic model, we generate a set of… (More)
We discuss an overtly "simple approach" to complex biological systems borrowing selectively from theoretical physics. The approach is framed by three maxims, and we show examples of its success in two different applications: investigating cellular robustness at the level of gene regulatory networks and quantifying rare events of DNA replication errors.
Using a combination of mathematical modelling, statistical simulation and large-scale data analysis we study the properties of linear regulatory chains (LRCs) within gene regulatory networks (GRNs). Our modelling indicates that downstream genes embedded within LRCs are highly insulated from the variation in expression of upstream genes, and thus LRCs act as… (More)