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Home page > Seminars > Previous seminars > Seminars 2011 > MSC Seminar Friday 13h00, Nov. 18 2011 - Francis Corson - Genetics, geometry and development.

MSC Seminar Friday 13h00, Nov. 18 2011 - Francis Corson - Genetics, geometry and development

Unless otherwise stated, seminars and defences take place at 11:30 in room 454A of Condorcet building.

The development of multicellular organisms rests on highly intricate genetic and molecular networks, whose behavior resists intuitive interpretation and systematic analysis. The theory of dynamical systems suggests that the essential features of this behavior can be characterized geometrically, with much of the underlying molecular architecture being abstracted away. Vulval development in the nematode C. elegans is a classic example of the specification of different cell identities by two molecular signals. A minimal geometric model explains the effect of known mutations affecting these signals and predicts strong, counter-intuitive interactions when mutations are combined. In addition, it can be used to discriminate intrinsic and extrinsic sources of variability in experiments where cell fates differ among genetically identical individuals. This geometric approach, which could readily be transposed to other systems, allows the structure and evolution of developmental pathways to be approached on the level of the phenotype (of observable traits), complementary to a mechanistic description on the molecular level.

Contact : Équipe séminaires / Seminar team - Published on / Publié le 7 November 2011

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