All courses for every first-year Science student will be delivered online this fall. A limited number of students in their second, third and fourth years will return to campus for part of the semester.

Dr. Andreas Hilfinger - University of Toronto


Title: Exploiting stochastic fluctuations to understand biological processes

Description: Many cellular processes are complex yet only partially characterized.  Constructing realistic models thus often requires making a large number of speculative assumptions. Instead of ignoring or guessing unknown details, I will present a theoretical framework to rigorously characterize fluctuations within incompletely specified biochemical reaction systems. By analyzing broad classes of systems that share some 
features but are left to vary arbitrarily in all unknown features, we can derive performance bounds that limit the ability of cellular processes to control cell-to-cell variability. For example, we showed that making biochemical complexes efficiently must invariably lead to large fluctuations in molecular concentrations, and that eliminating variability in one cellular component requires creating heterogeneity in another. Such universal trade-offs can give us insights into the design principles of cellular processes even when our knowledge of them is necessarily incomplete.

Speaker:Dr. Andreas Hilfinger

Institution: University of Toronto

Location: ABB-102


Host: Cecile Fradin

Location information

1280 Main St W, Hamilton, ON L8S 4L8, Canada

Hamilton L8S 4L8
1280 Main Street West
Go Back
McMaster University - Faculty of Science | Physics & Astronomy