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Joan van der Waals Colloquium
April 25, 2014 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Universiteit Leiden (LION/Theoretical Physics)
“Breaking the second genetic code ”
When we have a phone conversation we typically share the wire or optical fiber with other people that have phone conversations as well. Multiplexing of information is common in today’s technology and does not surprise us anymore. Remarkably also nature uses multiplexing to write down two layers of information along the DNA molecules. Besides the classical genetic code that encodes the building plans for proteins, there is a second genetic code which guides the packing of that very DNA molecule. In this talk I shall study the statistical physics underlying the second genetic code by introducing the mutation Monte Carlo scheme. I will then share preliminary results that prove for the first time that multiplexing of the two codes can be achieved to a surprising degree of perfection. And finally I plan to discuss my future plans in this exciting direction of research.