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Systems Biology as an Integrated Platform for Bioinformatics, Systems Synthetic Biology, and Systems Metabolic Engineering
Cells 2014, 3(1), 1-35; doi:10.3390/cells3010001
Article

Macroscopic Quantum-Type Potentials in Theoretical Systems Biology

Received: 27 July 2013 / Revised: 18 November 2013 / Accepted: 28 November 2013 / Published: 30 December 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers 2013)

Abstract

We review in this paper the use of the theory of scale relativity and fractal space-time as a tool particularly well adapted to the possible development of a future genuine systems theoretical biology. We emphasize in particular the concept of quantum-type potentials, since, in many situations, the effect of the fractality of space—or of the underlying medium—can be reduced to the addition of such a potential energy to the classical equations of motion. Various equivalent representations—geodesic, quantum-like, fluid mechanical, stochastic—of these equations are given, as well as several forms of generalized quantum potentials. Examples of their possible intervention in high critical temperature superconductivity and in turbulence are also described, since some biological processes may be similar in some aspects to these physical phenomena. These potential extra energy contributions could have emerged in biology from the very fractal nature of the medium, or from an evolutive advantage, since they involve spontaneous properties of self-organization, morphogenesis, structuration and multi-scale integration. Finally, some examples of applications of the theory to actual biological-like processes and functions are also provided.
Keywords: systems biology; relativity; fractals systems biology; relativity; fractals
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Nottale, L. Macroscopic Quantum-Type Potentials in Theoretical Systems Biology. Cells 2014, 3, 1-35.

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