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Mol Cell. 2013 Jan 24;49(2):222-31. doi: 10.1016/j.molcel.2013.01.003.

From systems to structure: bridging networks and mechanism.

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Department of Bioengineering and Therapeutic Sciences, University of California, San Francisco, San Francisco, CA 94158, USA.


There is a wide gap between the generation of large-scale biological data sets and more-detailed, structural and mechanistic studies. However, recent studies that explicitly combine data from systems and structural biological approaches are having a profound effect on our ability to predict how mutations and small molecules affect atomic-level mechanisms, disrupt systems-level networks, and ultimately lead to changes in organismal fitness. In fact, we argue that a shared framework for analysis of nonadditive genetic and thermodynamic responses to perturbations will accelerate the integration of reductionist and global approaches. A stronger bridge between these two areas will allow for a deeper and more-complete understanding of complex biological phenomenon and ultimately provide needed breakthroughs in biomedical research.

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