February 26, Wed 2013
1:15 pm, 1005 Haworth
Dr. Peter Kekenes-Huskey
Department of Pharmacology, University of California, San Diego
Molecular signaling from ions to cardiac cells: a computational perspective
Molecular signaling is an inherently multi-scale phenomenon describing the transport of solutes along concentration and potential energy gradients between proteins. The interaction between proteins, substrates, and the cellular environment furthermore impose significant temporal and spatial constraints on molecular signaling, which lead to markedly different dynamics in the cell in contrast to a ‘well-mixed’ in vitro system. Yet quantifying the influence of atomistic- to micron-scale structural features of the solute and environment, including electrostatic interactions and friction, presents a considerable challenge to modeling and experimental inquiry. Recent mathematical and numerical developments are providing the foundation for multi-scale examination of diffusion-controlled processes and have yielded considerable insight into biological signaling. In this talk, I will present some of these methodologies, and their application to substrate association rates, coupled enzymatic reactions, and micron-scale diffusional anisotropy in muscle cells.