The Ribosome Flow Model: Theory and Applications

December 12, 2014, Webb 1100

Michael Margaliot

Tel Aviv University, School of Electrical Engineering


A crucial stage in the production of proteins from the information encoded in the genes is called translation. During this stage, complex molecular machines, called ribosomes, bind to the mRNA and "read" it in a sequential manner. In 2011, Reuveni et al. suggested a nonlinear model for this process called the Ribosome Flow Model (RFM). The RFM can be derived as a mean-field approximation of an important model from non-equilibrium statistical physics called the Totally Asymmetric Simple Exclusion Process (TASEP). In this talk, we study the RFM using tools from systems and control theory including contraction theory, monotone systems theory, the analytic theory of continued fractions, and convex analysis. We detail several biological implications of the analysis and compare them to known experimental results. Joint work with Tamir Tuller (Tel Aviv University) and Eduardo D. Sontag (Rutgers University).

Speaker's Bio

Michael Margaliot is a Professor in the School of Electrical Engineering at the Tel-Aviv University. He received his Bachelors and Masters degree in Computer Engineering and Electrical Entineering from the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology. He then received his PhD in Electrical Engineering from the Tev Aviv University. His main research topics include stability analysis of switched systems under arbitrary switching, the ribosome flow model, and the control of power converts.