The bulletin of mathematical biophysics

, Volume 27, Supplement 1, pp 15–19 | Cite as

On compartmentalization

  • Vojtech Ličko


The notion of a compartment is discussed in terms of the Markovian process. From the stochastic matrix (the elements of which are state transition probabilities between different states of a particle of a chemical element), one may find a (generally) nonstochastic matrix; the elements of this second matrix are probabilities that, starting from some initial state, the particle will reach another seleced state (W. Feller, 1962,An Introduction to Probability Theory). Forming equivalence classes of states it can be shown that the equivalence classes based on an equivalence relation, which holds for the elements of the above-mentioned nonstochastic matrix, are essential for the notion of a compartment. From this procedure it is also obvious that a rigorous definition of a physically realizable compartment is impossible. Some conclusions on the practical use of compartmental analysis are drawn.


Equivalence Class Chemical Element Biophysics VOLUMe Stochastic Matrix State Transition Probability 
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Copyright information

© N. Rashevsky 1965

Authors and Affiliations

  • Vojtech Ličko
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Endocrinology of the Slovak Academy of SciencesBratislavaCzechoslovakia

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