Research Fellows Directory
Professor John King
University of Nottingham
The application of sophisticated mathematical modelling approaches provides a core component of efforts to address the challenges inherent in multiscale predictive biology. The scales involved range from highly complex subcellular genetic and signalling networks, though the behaviour of individual cells and their interactions with small numbers of neighbouring cells to the interplay between such interactions and phenomena operating at the tissue and organ scales, the manifestations of which have a host of important implications from, for example, the understanding of human disease to the improvement of crops.
Progress in the quantitative and mechanistic understanding of systems of this level of complexity requires the development of new mathematical approaches able to capture the vast ranges of spatially and temporal scales in question. It requires in addition the pursuit of genuinely multidisciplinary collaborations between modellers and life scientists that allow current biological knowledge to be embedded within the mathematical models and for the results of the models to be assessed against new experimental data, leading to an iterative process of model refinement. Work undertaken through the fellowship seeks to pursue these goals, specific areas of focus being provided by application to developments in regenerative medicine (signalling networks, stem-cell behaviour and tissue growth), plant systems biology (root growth and seed germination) and bacterial-network modelling (biofuel generation). In addition, the research seeks to enhance the mathematical methods available for analysing such problems.