On Monday May 2 2016 from 2-3 PM, Frank Bruggeman will give the SILS/IBED Systems Biology Seminar entitled Non-genetic variation in cell populations: quantification, models, causes and consequences. The lecture is in auditorium 00E70 of the new O2-building at the campus of the VU, De Boelelaan 1108 in Amsterdam. You are all welcome!


Cells growing under the same conditions generally differ in phenotype. This applies even to cells with the same genome sequence and growth history. It turns out that cells cannot completely suppress phenotypic heterogeneity and that they sometimes exploit it. We know this because of fluorescence microscopy, usage of fluorescent reporters and quantitative image analysis. Nowadays, we can track the fate of single cells and count the molecules they contain with unprecedented accuracy. The resulting experimental data makes sense because of an impressive theoretical understanding of how molecular stochasticity propagates to cell behaviour and how this, in turn, feedbacks onto molecular processes. In this talk, I will present some of our recent experimental and theoretical results, in the light of recent developments in `single-cell physiology’. I will discuss results that we obtained with Escherichia coli, Bacillus subtilis, Saccharomyces cerevisiae and human cells.
Selected Literature
1. Kempe H, Schwabe A, Crémazy F, Verschure PJ, Bruggeman FJ. The volumes and transcript counts of single cells reveal concentration homeostasis and capture biological noise. Molecular Biology of the Cell 2015; 26(4):797-804.
2. Schwabe A, Bruggeman FJ. Single yeast cells vary in transcription activity not in delay time after a metabolic shift. Nature Communications 2014; 5:4798.
3. van Heerden JH, Wortel MT, Bruggeman FJ, Heijnen JJ, Bollen YJ, Planqué R, Hulshof J, O’Toole TG, Wahl SA, Teusink B. Lost in transition: start-up of glycolysis yields subpopulations of nongrowing cells. Science 2014; 343(6174):1245114.
4. Schwabe A, Bruggeman FJ. Contributions of cell growth and biochemical reactions to nongenetic variability of cells. Biophysical Journal 2014; 107(2):301-13.
5. Schwabe A, Rybakova KN, Bruggeman FJ. Transcription stochasticity of complex gene regulation models. Biophysical Journal 2012; 103(6):1152-61.
6. Dobrzynski M, Bruggeman FJ. Elongation dynamics shape bursty transcription and translation. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences U S A 2009; 106(8):2583-8.