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Message Passing and Metabolism

Cancer Niches and Their Kikuchi Free Energy

by 1,*,†, 1,2,*,† and 1
Wellcome Centre for Human Neuroimaging, Institute of Neurology, University College London, London WC1N 3BG, UK
Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience, University College London, London WC1N 3BG, UK
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Equal Contribution.
Academic Editor: Geert Verdoolaege
Entropy 2021, 23(5), 609;
Received: 30 March 2021 / Revised: 27 April 2021 / Accepted: 7 May 2021 / Published: 14 May 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Applying the Free-Energy Principle to Complex Adaptive Systems)
Biological forms depend on a progressive specialization of pluripotent stem cells. The differentiation of these cells in their spatial and functional environment defines the organism itself; however, cellular mutations may disrupt the mutual balance between a cell and its niche, where cell proliferation and specialization are released from their autopoietic homeostasis. This induces the construction of cancer niches and maintains their survival. In this paper, we characterise cancer niche construction as a direct consequence of interactions between clusters of cancer and healthy cells. Explicitly, we evaluate these higher-order interactions between niches of cancer and healthy cells using Kikuchi approximations to the free energy. Kikuchi’s free energy is measured in terms of changes to the sum of energies of baseline clusters of cells (or nodes) minus the energies of overcounted cluster intersections (and interactions of interactions, etc.). We posit that these changes in energy node clusters correspond to a long-term reduction in the complexity of the system conducive to cancer niche survival. We validate this formulation through numerical simulations of apoptosis, local cancer growth, and metastasis, and highlight its implications for a computational understanding of the etiopathology of cancer. View Full-Text
Keywords: cancer niches; free energy; Kikuchi approximations; apoptosis; metastasis; cluster variation method cancer niches; free energy; Kikuchi approximations; apoptosis; metastasis; cluster variation method
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MDPI and ACS Style

Sajid, N.; Convertino, L.; Friston, K. Cancer Niches and Their Kikuchi Free Energy. Entropy 2021, 23, 609.

AMA Style

Sajid N, Convertino L, Friston K. Cancer Niches and Their Kikuchi Free Energy. Entropy. 2021; 23(5):609.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Sajid, Noor, Laura Convertino, and Karl Friston. 2021. "Cancer Niches and Their Kikuchi Free Energy" Entropy 23, no. 5: 609.

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