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Top Story

Computer model is ‘crystal ball’ for E. coli bacteria

It’s difficult to make predictions, especially about the future, and even more so when they involve the reactions of living cells--huge numbers of genes, proteins and enzymes, embedded in complex pathways and feedback loops. Yet researchers at the University of California, Davis, are attempting just that, building a computer model that predicts the behavior of a single cell of the bacterium Escherichia coli. The new simulation is the largest of its kind yet. This model could be useful to researchers as a fast and inexpensive way to predict how an organism might behave in a specific experiment. Although no prediction can be as accurate as actually performing the experiment, this would help scientists design their hypotheses and experiments. Applications range from finding the best growth conditions in biotechnology to identifying key pathways for antibiotic and stress resistance.

Visit Website | Image credit: Centers for Disease Control