Artificial Cell Systems Based in Gene Expression Protein Effects

Artificial Cell Systems Based in Gene Expression Protein Effects

Enrique Fernández-Blanco (University of A Coruña, Spain), Julian Dorado (University of A Coruña, Spain) and Nieves Pedreira (University of A Coruña, Spain)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-996-0.ch009
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The artificial embryogeny term overlaps all the models that try to adapt cellular properties into artificial models. This chapter presents a new model for artificial embryogeny that mimics the behaviour of biological cells, whose characteristics can be applied to solution of computational problems. The paper contains the theoretical development of the model and some test executed in an implementation of that model. The presented tests apply the model to simple structure generation and provide promising results with regard to its behaviour and applicability to more complex problems. The objective of the chapters is to be an introduction of the artificial embryogeny and shows an example of a model of these techniques.
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The Evoluationary Computation (EC) field has given rise to a set of models that are grouped under the name of Artifial Embryogeny (AE), first introduced by Stanley and Mikkulainnen (Stanley & Miikkulainen, 2003). This group refers to all the models that try to apply certain characteristics of biological embryonic cells to computer problem solving, i.c. self-organisation, failure tolerance, and parallel information processing.

The work on AE has two points of view. On the one hand could be found the grammatical models based on L-systems (Lindenmayer, 1968) which do a top-down approach to the problem. On the other hand could be found the chemical models based on the Turing’s ideas (Turing, 1952) which do a down-top approach.

On the last one, the starting point of this field could be found in the modelling of gene regulatory networks, performed by Kauffmann in 1969 (Kauffman, 1969). After that work, several develops were carried out on subjects such as the generation of complex behaviour by the differential expression of certain genes. This behaviour causes a cascade influence on the expressions of others genes (Mjolsness, Sharp & Reinitz, 1995).

The work performed by the scientific community can be divided into two main branches. The more theoretical branch uses the emulation of cell capabilities such as cellular differentiation and metabolism (Kaneko 2006; Kitano et al., 2005) to create a model that functions as a natural cell. The purpose of this work is to do an in-depth study of the biological model.

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