Questions relating to biological theory or theoretical developments that deals with biological processes.

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5
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1answer
122 views

The replicator equation vs the Lotka-Volterra equation

Background The replicator equation with $n$ strategies is given by the differential equation: \begin{equation} \dot x_{i} = x_{i} \left( \sum_{j=1}^{n} a_{ij}x_{j} - \phi \right) \qquad i = 1, ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

Can heritability be deduced from a correlation coefficient?

I am trying to understand the concept of heritability and from what I can gather, the heritability of a factor (say birth weight) must be closely related to the correlation coefficient of that factor ...
2
votes
1answer
86 views

Mutation-drift equilibrium and among loci variance in heterozygosity

At mutation-drift balance, the increased heterozygosity brought by new mutations is exactly equal to the loss of heterozygosity due to genetic drift. At equilibrium, the expected heterozygosity for a ...
2
votes
1answer
20 views

Mechanisms and Assumptions of the Species-Area Realtionship

I would like to choose a model to use to describe a species area relationship based on plant species richness data that I have collected. Rather than choosing the power model a priori, I am ...
1
vote
1answer
53 views

What are the basic skills required to pursue future studies in theoretical ecology? [closed]

I am a student and just about to choose a project for my Master's thesis in biology. I want to pursue studies in theoretical ecology in the future. Between field ecology and computational biology (as ...
0
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0answers
18 views

Why is marginal reconstruction “more correct” than joint reconstruction in some cases?

When reconstructing the ancestral states on a phylogenetic tree given the states at the tips, there are a number of methods for performing the reconstruction. This question is about marginal and joint ...
5
votes
1answer
95 views

How does the value of K determine number of local optima in NK model?

BACKGROUND The NK model of fitness landscape considers N states which can interact with K other states. For example N is the total number of genes in a haploid genome and K is the number of other ...
1
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0answers
7 views

Where can one find completed and processed Hi-C datasets?

I and a statistics graduate student at UCR, and I am working on Optimal Binning schemes and peak detection in Hi-C data analysis (a dataset that conveys information about proximity of a DNA strand ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

What are we missing about the real workings of the evolutionary process? [closed]

As a scientist (and a computer scientist at that) my view is that if we cannot simulate a process we have not understood it properly. I have been following the interesting field of Artificial Life for ...
7
votes
2answers
518 views

Help with the Price equation

The Price equation describes mathematically the evolution of a population of units from one generation to the next. $\bar{w}\Delta \bar{z}$ = $Cov (w_i,z_i) $+$ E(w_i\Delta z_i)$ I would like ...
7
votes
2answers
268 views

How does Natural Selection shape Genetic Variation?

Background Importance of the additive genetic variance As stated here, the fundamental theorem of Natural Selection (NS) by Fisher says: The rate of increase in the mean fitness of any organism ...
1
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0answers
33 views

Diffusion approximation to genetic drift

Textbook I am reading from the classical textbook Principles of Population Genetics, Hartl and Clark (pdf here). Introduction $f(p,x,t)$ is the distribution of allele frequency $x$ at time $t$ ...
11
votes
2answers
229 views

Is there a program that simulates biology on a molecular level?

Is there a computer program that simulates biology on a molecular level? Software that has rules that simulates the rules of molecular-biology?
3
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0answers
64 views

Why are fifth order Markov Models, the ones most often used for gene prediction?

As far as we know that smallest polypeptide chain length is 60 amino acids - so if we found an Open Reading Frame (ORF) of about 60 codons without the interruption of stop codon we can consider it to ...
1
vote
2answers
188 views

How quantitative is the theory of evolution right now? [closed]

We developed complex structures like eyes and brain, whose mechanisms rely on specific species of molecules and relevant chemical reactions. But we did not develop an enhanced night vision, the ...
3
votes
2answers
46 views

Is there a realistic “family tree” model for the human population?

I would like to do some gene inheritance simulations, and I was wondering if there is an accepted model for what mating looks like in the general human population? I am not necessarily looking for the ...
4
votes
1answer
52 views

Proof of the equivalence between two ways of defining ESS

Background Two common ways of defining what an Evolutionary Stable Strategy (ESS) are: First definition: Consider a population composed of populations playing two strategies, $\mathbf{p}$ and ...
2
votes
1answer
46 views

I know how to solve these equations, but I'm not sure what t' represents?

I am investigating the Wilson Cowan neuron population model, and I can follow most of it, but I'm not sure what is meant by t' in the equation for proportion of neurons in the refractory period. The ...
1
vote
0answers
29 views

Values of Miu_max and Ks from parameter estimation?

Background I have this simple biomass growth model: $$ \mu = \mu_{max}\cdot \left(\frac{S}{K_S+S}\right) \cdot \left(\frac{1}{1+S/K_{iS}}\right) \cdot \left(\frac{K_{iP}}{K_{iP}+P}\right) \\ ...
1
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0answers
46 views

Math backbone in biology/genetic

Are there any good books, that shows some advanced models in genetics particularly? The problem is i don't see any good math model in genetics interactions exept combinatorics. I'd like to know what ...
3
votes
1answer
99 views

Do the claims in this paper have any degree of validity?

The paper The waiting time problem in a model hominin population talks about a problem of waiting time, etc. Is the methodology of this numerical simulation, and the conclusion right or is it wrong? ...
0
votes
0answers
18 views

metabolic heat generation and exercise intensity

Is there a relationship between bio heat equation (found here) and exercise intensity as described here That is I am trying to include the effect from exercises to the tempertaure variation in skin. I ...
2
votes
1answer
21 views

relationship between cytokines

This is for a mathematical research. I am building a model to identify severe dengue patients through the interaction of cytokines S1P,IL1b,TNFa,PAF and IL10. For this I would like to know if there ...
3
votes
0answers
33 views

Games with non-uniform interaction rates

Background: Many models in evolutionary game theory assume uniform interaction rates. For instance, consider the $2\times 2$ game: \begin{array}{l c c} & A & B \\ A & a & b \\ ...
3
votes
3answers
222 views

Can/Have cancer cells be/been used in stem cell culture lines?

Since Cancer cells have unlimited growth potential, can they be induced towards totipotency and pluripotency? If so, can cancer cells be used in stem cell culture because of similar properties of ...
5
votes
0answers
54 views

Variance in Fst in the infinite island model

The most famous result in the study of structured populations come from Sewall Wright. He showed that in an island model, where each subpopulation is of size $N$ and the migration rate is $m$, then ...
1
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0answers
21 views

Replicator equation for mixed strategies?

The the replicator equation is usually defined for pure strategies. More specifically, the replicator eqn for $n$ strategies is given by: \begin{equation} \dot x_{i} = x_{i} \left( \sum_{j=1}^{n} ...
5
votes
2answers
81 views

Stochastic parameters in population growth equations

I'm more of a mathematician than a biologist, so I had a question about an application of the population growth equation to real-life models, and thus would like to ask biologists for their insights. ...
0
votes
1answer
42 views

Can DNA base pairs go through each other? [closed]

Consider the simplified version of the motion one DNA base pair held together by a hydrogen bond: Use u and v to denote the displacements of the bases from their equilibrium position along the ...
2
votes
0answers
14 views

Metabolic control theory: proof of the summation theorem?

I'm looking for a rigorous proof of the summation theorem of metabolic control theory. The only sources I find are the original papers by Kacser and Burns 1973 and Heinrich and Rapoport 1974, both of ...
1
vote
1answer
129 views

Are there any theories using thermodynamics/statistical mechanics or information theory principles to modelling in ecology?

So far, I've only known one: the MaxEnt theory. It uses the maximum information entropy developed by information theorist, which in turn inspired by the thermodynamics from physics, to predict the ...
2
votes
1answer
86 views

How does one calculate the amount of oxygen produced by trees?

I'm currently working on a project to measure the impact of tree planting. Calculating the amount of oxygen seems harder than I imagined. Of-course there's the type and size of the tree and the ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

How to interpret the breeders equation?

The univariate breeders equation is defined as, $\ R = h^2 s$ where $\ R $ is the response, $\ h^2 $ is the heritability (additive genetic variation), $\ s $ is the selection differential. The ...
0
votes
1answer
31 views

How to determine the relationship of competition or cooperation?

I am currently studying the interaction of Twitter memes (two or many), such as competition and cooperation. Is there any model or method in biology that can identify the types of the relationship, ...
9
votes
1answer
196 views

Expected time for a neutral allele to reach a frequency of $p_1$ when starting at frequency $p_0$

Kimura and Ohta (1968) showed that the expected time for a neutral allele to reach fixation (given that it will reach fixation) is $$\bar t(p_0)=-4N\left(\frac{1-p_0}{p_0}\right)\ln(1-p_0),$$ where ...
13
votes
4answers
2k views

Book recommendation on population/evolutionary genetics?

I have recently been involved in collaborations that require me to model the population genetics of eukaryotic populations. I fear I may either be "re-inventing the wheel" or making conceptual ...
2
votes
1answer
56 views

Discrete vs Continuous Replicator Dynamics

The replicator eqn in the case of discrete non-overlapping generations and asexual reproduction is given by the discrete replicator eqn: $$x_i(t+1) = x_i (t)\frac{f_i(t)}{\bar f (t)}$$ where $x_i$ is ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Index of ecological niche overlap

For this question I am interested in the Pianka's Index of ecological niche overlap. What is the Pianka's Index? How does it work? How can one calculate this index? How often is it used? In what ...
1
vote
0answers
44 views

Variance in reproductive success and effective population size

Background The effective population size $Ne$ is the size of the Wright-Fisher population that experience the same amount of drift than the population under consideration. The higher the variance in ...
13
votes
1answer
816 views

Can an organism exist as a single cell but come together as multi-cellular during certain times?

I am trying to remember a particular segment from a BBC special, in which there was single cellular species. However, at certain times all the individual cells came together to form a structure, not ...
6
votes
1answer
160 views

Effects of selection on effective population size

Background The effective population size ($N_e$) is a central concept of evolutionary biology and is influenced by several parameters. For example: sex ratio bias affects $N_e$ $\left(N_e = ...
9
votes
3answers
261 views

Do biological phenomena follow Gaussian statistics?

I have recently entered the life sciences (from physics). I am concerned about the use of p values in the life sciences literature. For example, in this article, they test 9 - 12 rats in a control ...
4
votes
2answers
692 views

Why is the DNA helix anti-parallel? [duplicate]

Why is it that DNA strands are running in anti-parallel fashion? Given the chemical base-pairing, they could have been parallel just as well.
0
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0answers
12 views

Biomolecule , DNA-RNA difference [duplicate]

Why is that a RNA has uracil in place of thymine? RNA could have thymine bases but it has uracil ? What is the reason for the presence of uracil there ?
0
votes
0answers
25 views

What is the distribution of the expected number of lineages in a birth-death tree after time T?

I've been looking at The reconstructed evolutionary process by Nee et al. 1994 and they provide a number of equations dealing with the birth-death process, specifically the "reconstructed" birth-death ...
6
votes
2answers
124 views

Within and Between Allelic Class Diversity

I am reading Charlesworth et al. 1997. They talk about diversity within and between allelic classes. Nucleotide diversities ($π$) at each neutral site were estimated from the mean of $2 \sum z_t ...
4
votes
1answer
68 views

How many traits can a multivariate breeders equation handle?

The multivariate breeders equation (MBE) by Lande predicts the change in a trait $\Delta \bar z$ (response) as $\Delta \bar z = G \beta$ where $G$ is a genetic variance-covariance matrix and ...
5
votes
4answers
106 views

Is Insulin-Glucose dynamic Lotka-Volterra?

From Wikipedia: The Lotka–Volterra equations, also known as the predator–prey equations, are a pair of first-order, non-linear, differential equations frequently used to describe the dynamics of ...
2
votes
1answer
132 views

Why does the number of mutations per individuals follow a Poisson distribution?

I was reading this review. On page 11, left column, first paragraph, one can read: [..] there is a Poisson distribution of the equilibrium number of mutations per individual, if fitness effects ...
2
votes
0answers
54 views

Textbook for quantitative biochemistry with thermodynamics, as an alternative to Voet, Voet & Pratt (Fundamentals of Biochemistry)?

I'm looking for a great textbook on biochemistry that covers core topics: relevant aspects of thermodynamics, reaction kinetics, metabolism (e.g. krebs cycle, respiration, etc.). Ideally it would also ...