Phenotypic deconstruction of gene circuitry

Jason G. Lomnitz, Michael A. Savageau

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


It remains a challenge to obtain a global perspective on the behavioral repertoire of complex nonlinear gene circuits. In this paper, we describe a method for deconstructing complex systems into nonlinear sub-systems, based on mathematically defined phenotypes, which are then represented within a system design space that allows the repertoire of qualitatively distinct phenotypes of the complex system to be identified, enumerated, and analyzed. This method efficiently characterizes large regions of system design space and quickly generates alternative hypotheses for experimental testing. We describe the motivation and strategy in general terms, illustrate its use with a detailed example involving a two-gene circuit with a rich repertoire of dynamic behavior, and discuss experimental means of navigating the system design space.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number025108
Issue number2
StatePublished - 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Mathematics
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Statistical and Nonlinear Physics
  • Mathematical Physics
  • Medicine(all)


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