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FEBS J. 2009 Feb;276(4):886-902. doi: 10.1111/j.1742-4658.2008.06844.x.

Systems biology: parameter estimation for biochemical models.

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Centrum voor Wiskunde en Informatica, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


Mathematical models of biological processes have various applications: to assist in understanding the functioning of a system, to simulate experiments before actually performing them, to study situations that cannot be dealt with experimentally, etc. Some parameters in the model can be directly obtained from experiments or from the literature. Others have to be inferred by comparing model results to experiments. In this minireview, we discuss the identifiability of models, both intrinsic to the model and taking into account the available data. Furthermore, we give an overview of the most frequently used approaches to search the parameter space.

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