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UiT is helping to push the exciting field of systems biology

UiT researchers Ines Heiland and Hans Christopher Bernstein are guest editors of a special issue on systems biology, together with a colleague from Ljubljana. The special issue will be published in Cell and Molecular Life Sciences.


Sunniva Katharina Thode 02.12.2019 14:11   (Sist oppdatert: 03.12.2019 12:54)

In the special issue, they have focused on research doing metabolic modelling trying to explain complex metabolic systems from within a single cell to whole body models using mathematical modeling in close combination with experimental approaches.

The issue presents a number of different approaches and model systems, ranging from bacteria to human.

 

UiT is helping to push the exciting field of systems biology

Predicting interspecies interactions is one of the many exciting frontiers of Systems Biology. The image above shows large cyanobacteria (otherwise known as blue-green algae) transferring freshly fixed CO2 to bacteria that can be engineered to make bioproducts such as biodegradable plastic-substitutes. Photo: William Chrisler

Systems biology is cornerstone of molecular biosciences that combines experiments with mathematical modelling to enhance our understanding of life. It is used to develop new medical treatments, pharmaceuticals, biofuels and understand the complex lives of animals, microbes and plants.

UiT the Arctic University of Norway is helping to push this exciting field and has established itself as a hub for systems biology in Norway. In 2018, UiT hosted one of the most important international systems biology meetings, the meeting of The International Study Group in Systems Biology (ISGSB – isgsb.org). ISGSB biannual conferences bring together scientists from around the world who work together to advance public knowledge and mentor the next generation of systems biologists. UiT faculty members Ines Heiland (Arctic and Marine Biology Institute) and Hans Christopher Bernstein (Norwegian College of Fisheries Science) organized this most recent meeting. Professor Heiland is now the leading the ISGSB community as the elected chair.

UiT researchers – together with ISGSB colleagues from across the world – are working to integrate experimental measurements of biochemicals to inform powerful mathematical models that can simulate the behavior of cells. This will enable researchers to predict how microbes, plants and even human cells affect each other and how interspecies interactions can be controlled for treating diseases or developing new biotechnologies.

This will enable researchers to predict how microbes, plants and even human cells affect each other and how interspecies interactions can be controlled for treating diseases or developing new biotechnologies.

UiT researchers are guest editors of a special issue on systems biology

The most recent accomplishments in systems biology will be presented as special issue in the prestigious journal Cell and Molecular Life Sciences. Professor Ines Heiland and associate professor Hans Bernstein have teamed up with professor Anze Zupinac from the National Institute of Biology in Ljubjana (Slovenia) to organize a special issue that hosts a collection of new scientific articles on integrating biological experiments with mathematical modelling in all kingdoms of life.

The aim of the review series was to provide an overview of current approaches and show their potential applications towards human health, biotechnology and fundamental biology. This accomplishment underpins current efforts at UiT where number of research groups, across multiple faculties are currently working together to advance research and education in systems biology, systems medicine and synthetic biology. As one of the incentives, Heiland and Bernstein are teaming up with researchers from NorStruct and the Arctic Centre for Sustainable Energy (ARC) to build a high throughput synthetic biology and screening approach to let mathematical simulations guide the design of new bacterial strains for production of sustainable natural products such as bio-plastics.