Unexpected Universality Results for Three Classes of P Systems with Symport/Antiport

  • Mihai Ionescu
  • Carlos Martín-Vide
  • Andrei PĂun
  • Gheorghe PĂun
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 2568)


Symport and antiport are biological ways of transporting molecules through membranes in “collaborating” pairs; in the case of symport the two molecules pass in the same direction, in the case of antiport the two molecules pass in opposite directions. Here we first survey the results about the computing power of membrane systems (P systems) using only symport/antiport rules (hence these systems compute only by using communication), then we introduce a novel way of defining the result of a computation in a membrane system: looking for the trace of certain objects in their movement through membranes. Rather unexpected, in this way we get characterizations of recursively enumerable languages by means of membrane systems with symport/antiport which work with multisets of objects (note the qualitative difference between the data structure used by computations - multisets: no ordering - and the data structure of the output - strings: linear ordering). A similar remark holds true for the case of analysing P systems: the sequence of certain distinguished objects taken from the environment during a computation is the string recognized by the computation. We also survey universality results from this area, with sketched proofs.


Membrane System Mathematical Linguistics Register Machine Membrane Computing Skin Membrane 
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.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    B. Alberts et al.: Essential Cell Biology. An Introduction to the Molecular Biology of the Cell. Garland Publ. Inc., New York, London, 1998.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    I.I. Ardelean: The Relevance of Biomembranes for P Systems. Fundamenta Informaticae, 49, 1–3 (2002), 35–43.zbMATHMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    E. Csuhaj-Varju, G. Vaszil. P Automata. Pre-Proceedings of Workshop on Membrane Computing, Curtea de Argesş, Romania, 2002, MolCoNet Publication No. 1, 2002, 177–192.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    R. Freund, M. Oswald: A Short Note on Analysing P Systems. Bulletin of the EATCS, 78 (October 2002).Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    R. Freund, Gh. Păun: On the Number of Non-terminal Symbols in Graph-controlled, Programmed and Matrix Grammars. Proc. Conf. Universal Machines and Computations, Chisşinău, 2001 (M. Margenstern and Y. Rogozhin, eds.), LNCS 2055, Springer-Verlag, 2001, 214–225.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    P. Frisco, H.J. Hoogeboom: Simulating Counter Automata by P Systems with Symport/Antiport. Pre-Proceedings of Workshop on Membrane Computing, Curtea de Argesş, Romania, 2002, MolCoNet Publication No. 1, 2002, 237–248.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    M. Ionescu, C. Martín-Vide, Gh. Păun: P Systems with Symport/Antiport Rules: The Traces of Objects. Grammars, 5 (2002).Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    C. Martin-Vide, A. Păun, Gh. Păun: On the Power of P Systems with Symport Rules. Journal of Universal Computer Science, 8, 2 (2002), 317–331.MathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    C. Martin-Vide, A. Păun, Gh. Păun, G. Rozenberg: Membrane Systems with Coupled Transport: Universality and Normal Forms. Fundamenta Informaticae, 49, 1–3 (2002), 1–15.zbMATHMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    C. Martin-Vide, Gh. Păun: Elements of Formal Language Theory for Membrane Computing. Technical Report 21/01 of the Research Group on Mathematical Linguistics, Rovira i Virgili University, Tarragona, 2001.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    A. Păun: Membrane Systems with Symport/Antiport: Universality Results. Pre-Proceedings of Workshop on Membrane Computing, Curtea de Argesş, Romania, 2002, MolCoNet Publication No. 1, 2002, 333–344.Google Scholar
  12. 12.
    A. Păun, Gh. Păun: The Power of Communication; P Systems with Symport/Antiport. New Generation Computers, 20, 3 (2002), 295–306.zbMATHCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    A. Păun, Gh. Păun, G. Rozenberg: Computing by Communication in Networks of Membranes. International Journal of Fundamentals of Computer Science, to appear.Google Scholar
  14. 14.
    Gh. Păun: Computing withMembranes. Journal of Computer and System Sciences, 61, 1 (2000), 108–143CrossRefzbMATHMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Gh. Păun: Computing with Membranes: An Introduction. Springer-Verlag, Berlin, 2002.Google Scholar
  16. 16.
    Gh. Păun, M. Perez-Jimenez, F. Sancho-Caparrini: On the Reachability Problem for P Systems with Porters. Proc. Automata and Formal Languages Conf., Debrecen, Hungary, 2002.Google Scholar
  17. 17.
    P. Sosik. P Systems Versus Register Machines: Two Universality Proofs. Pre-Proceedings of Workshop on Membrane Computing, Curtea de Argesş, Romania, 2002, MolCoNet Publication No. 1, 2002, 371–382.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mihai Ionescu
    • 1
  • Carlos Martín-Vide
    • 2
  • Andrei PĂun
    • 3
  • Gheorghe PĂun
    • 2
    • 4
  1. 1.Faculty of MathematicsUniversity of BucharestBucuresştiRomania
  2. 2.Research Group on Mathematical LinguisticsRovira i Virgili UniversityTarragonaSpain
  3. 3.Department of Computer ScienceUniversity of Western Ontario LondonOntarioCanada
  4. 4.Institute of Mathematics of the Romanian AcademyBucuresştiRomania

Personalised recommendations