Math Biology Seminar: Denis Thieffry

  • Date: 04/21/2016
  • Time: 14:30
Denis Thieffry, Ecole Normale Supérieure, France

University of British Columbia


Logical modelling of Drosophila mesoderm specification.


Given the complexity of developmental networks, it is often difficult to predict the effect of genetic perturbations, even within coding genes. Regulatory factors generally have pleiotropic effects, exhibit partially redundant roles, and regulate highly interconnected pathways with ample cross-talk.
I will present a signalling/regulatory network model encompassing 48 components and 82 regulatory interactions involved in mesoderm specification during Drosophila development, thereby providing a formal integration of all available genetic information from the literature. The four main tissues derived from mesoderm correspond to alternative stable states.
We demonstrate that this relatively simple, discrete model can predict known mutant phenotypes and use it to systematically predict the effects of over 300 new, often non-intuitive, loss- and gain-of-function and combinations thereof. We further validated several novel predictions experimentally, thereby demonstrating the robustness of model.

Other Information: 

Location: ESB 4127