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PLoS One. 2012;7(4):e34727. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0034727. Epub 2012 Apr 5.

Dose-response aligned circuits in signaling systems.

Author information

1
State key Laboratory for Mesoscopic Physics and School of Physics, Peking University, Beijing, China.

Abstract

Cells use biological signal transduction pathways to respond to environmental stimuli and the behavior of many cell types depends on precise sensing and transmission of external information. A notable property of signal transduction that was characterized in the Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast cell and many mammalian cells is the alignment of dose-response curves. It was found that the dose response of the receptor matches closely the dose responses of the downstream. This dose-response alignment (DoRA) renders equal sensitivities and concordant responses in different parts of signaling system and guarantees a faithful information transmission. The experimental observations raise interesting questions about the nature of the information transmission through DoRA signaling networks and design principles of signaling systems with this function. Here, we performed an exhaustive computational analysis on network architectures that underlie the DoRA function in simple regulatory networks composed of two and three enzymes. The minimal circuits capable of DoRA were examined with Michaelis-Menten kinetics. Several motifs that are essential for the dynamical function of DoRA were identified. Systematic analysis of the topology space of robust DoRA circuits revealed that, rather than fine-tuning the network's parameters, the function is primarily realized by enzymatic regulations on the controlled node that are constrained in limiting regions of saturation or linearity.

PMID:
22496849
PMCID:
PMC3320644
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0034727
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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