Boolean models of genomic regulatory networks: reduction mappings, inference, and external control.
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Computational modeling of genomic regulation has become an important focus of systems biology and genomic signal processing for the past several years. It holds the promise to uncover both the structure and dynamical properties of the complex gene, protein or metabolic networks responsible for the cell functioning in various contexts and regimes. This, in turn, will lead to the development of optimal intervention strategies for prevention and control of disease. At the same time, constructing such computational models faces several challenges. High complexity is one of the major impediments for the practical applications of the models. Thus, reducing the size/complexity of a model becomes a critical issue in problems such as model selection, construction of tractable subnetwork models, and control of its dynamical behavior. We focus on the reduction problem in the context of two specific models of genomic regulation: Boolean networks with perturbation (BN(P)) and probabilistic Boolean networks (PBN). We also compare and draw a parallel between the reduction problem and two other important problems of computational modeling of genomic networks: the problem of network inference and the problem of designing external control policies for intervention/altering the dynamics of the model.
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