Reverse engineering systems models of regulation: Discovery, prediction and mechanisms

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Journal Article
Current Opinion in Biotechnology, 2012, 23 (4), pp. 598 - 603
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Biological systems can now be understood in comprehensive and quantitative detail using systems biology approaches. Putative genome-scale models can be built rapidly based upon biological inventories and strategic system-wide molecular measurements. Current models combine statistical associations, causative abstractions, and known molecular mechanisms to explain and predict quantitative and complex phenotypes. This top-down 'reverse engineering' approach generates useful organism-scale models despite noise and incompleteness in data and knowledge. Here we review and discuss the reverse engineering of biological systems using top-down data-driven approaches, in order to improve discovery, hypothesis generation, and the inference of biological properties. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.
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