Systems biology modelling
We develop and analyse models of biological networks to improve our understanding of how living cells and tissues function. The models are mainly based on the interaction between different genes and proteins, for example in stem cells.
The research group works on constructing and refining computational models to describe genetic, epigenetic and metabolic networks. Such systems biology models can, for example, describe how entire populations interact with their environment, how individual cells choose to differentiate into different cell types, or how multicellular systems form patterns and grow new organs in two or three dimensions.
This interdisciplinary research is conducted in close collaboration with researchers in medicine and biology. Together we develop new methods linked to new types of experiments and data. Regulation of stem cells is an important area; for example, how immune system cells decide to mature or how skin cells can be directly reprogrammed to become neurons or stem cells. In biology, we work on decomposition processes in soil where fungi interact with organic molecules and mineral particles. There are also links to plant biology through the Sainsbury Laboratory at the University of Cambridge.