Modeling and Property Verification of Lactose Operon Regulation

José Carlos Merino MombachMarcelo Cezar PintoLeila RibeiroLuciana Foss

Understanding biochemical pathways is one of the big challenges of the field of molecular biology nowadays. Computer science can contribute in this area in a variety of ways. One of them is providing formalisms and tools to simulate and check properties of pathways. One formalism that is well known and suited for modeling concurrent and distributed systems is Milner’s Calculus of Communicating Systems (CCS). CCS is a process algebra and there are many tools that support modeling and automatic verification of properties of systems modeled in terms of CCS processes. This paper describes the regulation of the lactose operon using CCS. We validate our formal model by automatic checking a series of properties that are known for the regulation of the lactose. Thus, we show the viability of using process algebras to model and reason about biochemical networks.

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