Membrane Systems with External Control

  • Robert Brijder
  • Matteo Cavaliere
  • Agustín Riscos-Núñez
  • Grzegorz Rozenberg
  • Dragoş Sburlan
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 4361)


We consider the idea of controlling the evolution of a membrane system. In particular, we investigate a model of membrane systems using promoted rules, where a string of promoters (called the control string) “travels” through the regions, activating the rules of the system. This control string is present in the skin region at the beginning of the computation – one can interpret that it has been inserted in the system before starting the computation – and it is “consumed”, symbol by symbol, while traveling through the system. In this way, the inserted string drives the computation of the membrane system by controlling the activation of evolution rules. When the control string is entirely consumed and no rule can be applied anymore, then the system halts – this corresponds to a successful computation. The number of objects present in the output region is the result of such a computation. In this way, using a set of control strings (a control program), one generates a set of numbers. We also consider a more restrictive definition of a successful computation, and then study the corresponding model.

In this paper we investigate the influence of the structure of control programs on the generative power. We demonstrate that different structures yield generative powers ranging from finite to recursively enumerable number sets.

In determining the way that the control string moves through the regions, we consider two possible “strategies of traveling”, and prove that they are similar as far as the generative power is concerned.


Control Program Membrane System External Control Regular Language Output Region 
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

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Robert Brijder
    • 1
  • Matteo Cavaliere
    • 2
    • 3
  • Agustín Riscos-Núñez
    • 3
  • Grzegorz Rozenberg
    • 1
  • Dragoş Sburlan
    • 3
    • 4
  1. 1.Leiden Institute of Advanced Computer Science (LIACS)Universiteit LeidenLeidenThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Centre for Computational and Systems BiologyMicrosoft Research – University of TrentoTrentoItaly
  3. 3.Dept. of Computer Science and Artificial IntelligenceUniversity of SevilleSevilleSpain
  4. 4.Faculty of Mathematics and InformaticsOvidius UniversityConstantzaRomania

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