Genome sequences are now available that enable us to determine the biological components that make up a cell or an organism. The new discipline of systems biology examines how these components interact and form networks, and how the networks generate whole cell functions corresponding to observable phenotypes.
Systems Biology: Properties of Reconstructed Networks, the first devoted to systems biology, describes how to model networks, how to determine their properties, and how to relate these to phenotypic functions. The prerequisites are some knowledge of linear algebra and biochemistry. Though the links between the mathematical ideas and biological processes are made clear, the book reflects the irreversible trend of increasing mathematical content in biology education. Therefore to assist both teacher and student, in an associated web site Palsson provides problem sets, projects and Powerpoint slides, and keeps the presentation in Systems Biology: Properties of Reconstructed Networks concrete with illustrative material and experimental results.
2. Basic concepts in systems biology
Part I. Reconstruction of Biochemical Networks:
3. Metabolic networks
4. Regulatory networks
5. Signalling networks
Part II. Mathematical Representation of Reconstructed Networks:
6. Basic features of S
7. Topological properties
8. Fundamental subspaces
9. Null space of S
10. The left null space of S
11. The row and column spaces of S
Part III. Capabilities of Reconstructed Networks:
12. Dual causality
13. Properties of solution spaces
14. Sampling properties of solution spaces
15. Finding functional states
16. Parametric sensitivity
Appendix A: nomenclature and abbreviations
Appendix B: E. coli core metabolic network
Bernhard Ø . Palsson, Professor of Bioengineering and Adjunct Professor of Medicine, University of California, San Diego.
"[...] [deserves] serious attention from any quantitative scientist or physicist who hopes to learn about modern biology [...] a welcome departure from the typical biology textbook [...] a very readable introduction to the subject [...] this is an exciting time for biology. The author exposes readers to enough material that the research literature in quantitative systems biology should become accessible."
- Physics Today