Automatic Inference of Regulatory and Dynamical Properties from Incomplete Gene Interaction and Expression Data
Advanced mathematical methods and computational tools are required to properly understand the behavior of large and complex regulatory networks that control cellular processes. Since available data are predominantly qualitative or semi-quantitative, discrete (logical) modeling approaches are increasingly used to model these networks. Here, relying on the multilevel logical formalism developed by R. Thomas et al. [7,9,8], we propose a computational approach enabling (i) to check the existence of at least one consistent model, given partial data on the regulatory structure and dynamical properties, and (ii) to infer properties common to all consistent models. Such properties represent non trivial deductions and could be used by the biologist to design new experiments. Rather than focusing on a single plausible solution, i.e. a model fully defined, we consider the whole class of models consistent with the available data and some economy criteria, from which we deduce shared properties. We use constraint programming to represent this class of models as the set of all solutions of a set of constraints . For the sake of efficiency, we have developed a framework, called SysBiOX, enabling (i) the integration of partial gene interaction and expression data into constraints and (ii) the resolution of these constraints in order to infer properties about the structure or the behaviors of the gene network. SysBiOX is implemented in ASP (Answer Set Programming) using Clingo .
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