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PLoS One. 2015 May 7;10(5):e0125886. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0125886. eCollection 2015.

Hierarchical feedback modules and reaction hubs in cell signaling networks.

Author information

1
Department of Physics, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China; Collaborative Innovation Center of Quantum Matter, Beijing 100084, China.

Abstract

Despite much effort, identification of modular structures and study of their organizing and functional roles remain a formidable challenge in molecular systems biology, which, however, is essential in reaching a systematic understanding of large-scale cell regulation networks and hence gaining capacity of exerting effective interference to cell activity. Combining graph theoretic methods with available dynamics information, we successfully retrieved multiple feedback modules of three important signaling networks. These feedbacks are structurally arranged in a hierarchical way and dynamically produce layered temporal profiles of output signals. We found that global and local feedbacks act in very different ways and on distinct features of the information flow conveyed by signal transduction but work highly coordinately to implement specific biological functions. The redundancy embodied with multiple signal-relaying channels and feedback controls bestow great robustness and the reaction hubs seated at junctions of different paths announce their paramount importance through exquisite parameter management. The current investigation reveals intriguing general features of the organization of cell signaling networks and their relevance to biological function, which may find interesting applications in analysis, design and control of bio-networks.

PMID:
25951347
PMCID:
PMC4424001
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0125886
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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