IJCsatellite IJCsatellite/PRL

14 January 2005

Phys. Rev. Lett. 94, 018104 (2005) http://scitation.aip.org/getpdf/servlet/GetPDFServlet?filetype=pdf&id=PRLTAO000094000001018104000001&idtype=cvips

Sampling Rare Switching Events in Biochemical Networks

Rosalind J. Allen,1 Patrick B. Warren,2,1 and Pieter Rein ten Wolde1

1FOM Institute for Atomic and Molecular Physics, Kruislaan 407, 1098 SJ Amsterdam, The Netherlands
2Unilever R&D Port Sunlight, Bebington, Wirral CH63 3JW, United Kingdom

(Received 26 September 2004; published 6 January 2005)

Bistable biochemical switches are widely found in gene regulatory networks and signal transduction pathways. Their switching dynamics are difficult to study, however, because switching events are rare, and the systems are out of equilibrium. We present a simulation method for predicting the rate and mechanism of the flipping of these switches. We apply it to a genetic switch and find that it is highly efficient. The path ensembles for the forward and reverse processes do not coincide. The method is widely applicable to rare events and nonequilibrium processes. ?2005 The American Physical Society

URL: http://link.aps.org/abstract/PRL/v94/e018104
PACS: 87.16.Yc, 05.40.-a, 82.39.Rt, 87.16.Ac

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