Bulletin of Mathematical Biology

, Volume 63, Issue 6, pp 1063–1078 | Cite as

Estimating the size of the olfactory repertoire

  • Liran Carmel
  • David Harel
  • Doron Lancet


The concept of shape space, which has been successfully implemented in immunology, is used here to construct a model for the discrimination power of the olfactory system. Using reasonable assumptions on the behaviour of the biological system, we are able to estimate the number of distinct olfactory receptor types. Our estimated value of around 1000 receptor types is in good agreement with experimental data.


Olfactory System Discrimination Power Shape Space Single Receptor Immune Network 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Society for Mathematical Biology 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Liran Carmel
    • 1
  • David Harel
    • 1
  • Doron Lancet
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Computer Science and Applied MathematicsThe Weizmann Institute of ScienceRehovotIsrael
  2. 2.Department of Molecular GeneticsThe Weizmann Institute of ScienceRehovotIsrael

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