Display Settings:

Format

Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
PLoS Comput Biol. 2012;8(7):e1002583. doi: 10.1371/journal.pcbi.1002583. Epub 2012 Jul 5.

Quantifying and analyzing the network basis of genetic complexity.

Author information

  • 1Institute for Systems Biology, Seattle, Washington, United States of America.

Erratum in

  • PLoS Comput Biol. 2012 Aug;8(8). doi: 10.1371/annotation/a4b94e99-6f8a-433e-9a13-17a9f206eb68.

Abstract

Genotype-to-phenotype maps exhibit complexity. This genetic complexity is mentioned frequently in the literature, but a consistent and quantitative definition is lacking. Here, we derive such a definition and investigate its consequences for model genetic systems. The definition equates genetic complexity with a surplus of genotypic diversity over phenotypic diversity. Applying this definition to ensembles of Boolean network models, we found that the in-degree distribution and the number of periodic attractors produced determine the relative complexity of different topology classes. We found evidence that networks that are difficult to control, or that exhibit a hierarchical structure, are genetically complex. We analyzed the complexity of the cell cycle network of Sacchoromyces cerevisiae and pinpointed genes and interactions that are most important for its high genetic complexity. The rigorous definition of genetic complexity is a tool for unraveling the structure and properties of genotype-to-phenotype maps by enabling the quantitative comparison of the relative complexities of different genetic systems. The definition also allows the identification of specific network elements and subnetworks that have the greatest effects on genetic complexity. Moreover, it suggests ways to engineer biological systems with desired genetic properties.

PMID:
22792055
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3390359
Free PMC Article

Images from this publication.See all images (4)Free text

Figure 1
Figure 2
Figure 3
Figure 4
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

0 comments
How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Icon for Public Library of Science Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk