Physics of Biology


In Search of Gauge Theories for Living Cells: a Topological Exploration on the Deep Structure of Biological Complexity

Authors: Arturo Tozzi, Jorge Navarro, James F Peters, Pedro C. Marijuán

Gauge theories had a tremendous impact in particle physics and have been recently proposed in order to assess nervous activity too. Here, taking into account novel claims from topology, the mathematical branch which allows the investigation of the most general systems activity, we aim to sketch a gauge theory addressed to the fundamentals of cellular organization. In our framework, the reference system is the living cell, equipped with general symmetries and energetic constraints standing for the intertwined biochemical, biomolecular, and metabolic pathways that allow the homeostasis. Abstractly, these functional movements follow donut-like trajectories. Environmental stimuli stand for forces able to locally break the symmetry of metabolic pathways, while the species-specific DNA is the gauge field that restores the general homeostasis after external perturbations. We show how the Borsuk-Ulam Theorem (BUT), which states that a single point on a circumference maps two points on a sphere, allows an inquiry of the evolution from inorganic to organic structures and the comparison between prokaryotic and eukaryotic metabolisms and whole functionalities. Furthermore, using recently developed BUT variants, we operationalize a methodology for the description of cellular activity in terms of topology/gauge fields and discuss about the experimental implications and feasible applications. A new avenue for a deeper exploration of biological complexity looms.

Comments: 14 Pages.

Download: PDF

Submission history

[v1] 2016-10-03 00:49:32

Unique-IP document downloads: 55 times is a pre-print repository rather than a journal. Articles hosted may not yet have been verified by peer-review and should be treated as preliminary. In particular, anything that appears to include financial or legal advice or proposed medical treatments should be treated with due caution. will not be responsible for any consequences of actions that result from any form of use of any documents on this website.

Add your own feedback and questions here:
You are equally welcome to be positive or negative about any paper but please be polite. If you are being critical you must mention at least one specific error, otherwise your comment will be deleted as unhelpful.

comments powered by Disqus