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Precision Bioresponse Engineering

Professor Jean-Marie Aerts, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven

Wednesday 13 May 2009, 1200-1300
Lecture Theatre 3, Engineering Building

Although living organisms (animals, plants, humans, micro-organisms, etc.) are the central part in most bioprocesses, their biological response (bioresponse) to the process environment is often not taken into account in biological process engineering (monitoring and/or control).

However, thanks to the revolution in sensors, hardware and software it becomes possible today to integrate biological responses in process management by using compact (real-time) modelling techniques that take into account the dynamic and time-varying characteristics of living organisms. This has resulted in, among other things, the development of model-based process controllers and monitors in animal, plant and human applications.

An important challenge in these applications is the development of mathematical models that are compact enough to be used in practice in real-time, accurate in describing the complex biological systems and biologically meaningful.

In recent years, the systems analysis approach of biological systems has also gained strong interest in biology, resulting worldwide in the rise of systems biology demonstrating that the data-based (mechanistic) modelling techniques from engineering can also be useful in unraveling the underlying mechanisms of biological processes (i.e. reverse engineering of biological systems).

An overview will be given of the approaches and the developments in the higher mentioned field of precision bioresponse engineering at the division Measure, Model and Manage Bioresponses (M3-BIORES) of the Catholic University of Leuven.