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Chapter 9 Temporal organization of Metabolic Cycles and structural Complexity: oscillations and Chaos

Elsevier B.V.
DOI: 10.1016/s0167-7306(08)60552-9
  • Biology
  • Chemistry
  • Mathematics
  • Medicine


Publisher Summary This chapter focuses on the metabolic networks and cycles that display a temporal organization. It discusses the role of compartmentalization and supramolecular complexity of the living cell in generating temporal organization of certain important metabolic processes. Besides the experimental results that demonstrate that various metabolic processes display oscillations, theoretical models are also presented to explain these results. These models explain the features of these oscillations through the individual properties of the enzyme reactions and through the topology of the network of biochemical processes. After a brief overview of two biological processes that have left a mark in the field—namely, glycolytic and calcium oscillations—the chapter presents a simple open metabolic cycle to define the minimal condition that generates oscillations. The chapter then considers the way in which compartmentalization and electrostatic repulsion of the reagents of a chemical reaction generate sustained oscillations and demonstrates the process through which the complexity of the organization of supramolecular edifices in the cell leads to periodic and chaotic oscillations of some important biological processes.

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