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Biomathematics

Dr Henri Laurie
2nd semester 2018
20 credits / 30 lectures

This module provides a high-level overview of the field of biomathematics, in four sections, roughly by physical scale:

  • The cell: Overview --- what is metabolism? (general biology of cells, intracellular components and phenomena, cell membranes. genome, proteome.) Particular examples studied: metabolic pathways (respiration, photosynthesis),metabolic networks, Hodgkin-Huxley, Fitzhugh-Nagumo depolarisation wave models.
  • The organism: Overview---the individual as the focus of biological understanding (feeding, excretion, reproduction, regulatory mechanisms, immune systems, dispersal/foraging, evolution). Particular examples studied: DEB theory, life history theory, evolution, movement studies.
  • Populations: Overview (head count vs biomass, structured vs unstructured, interacting populations, evolution again). Particular examples studied: population ecology, fisheries management, savanna plant/herbivore interaction.
  • Ecosystems: Overview (multiple interacting components in space and time; many scales). Particular examples studied: combining abiotic with biotic components, stochasticity in system drivers (rainfall, seasonality, resource levels), the Maximum Entropy Theory of Ecology.
  • To end with, a review of topics not done, for example, causal modelling, neuromaths, predictive biomaths, biostatistics, epidemiology, systematics.

Assessments are via a short report for each module, plus a final exam based on the tutorials.

Prerequisites:

None