Section: Overall Objectives
Highlight: Robustness measure of temporal logic properties
Robustness is the capacity of a system to maintain a function in the face of perturbations. It is essential for the correct functioning of natural as well as engineered biological systems. Robustness is generally defined in an ad-hoc problem-dependent manner, thus hampering the fruitful development of a theory of biological robustness, advocated by Kitano [Mol Syst Biol, 3:137, 2007].
In  , we propose a general definition of robustness that applies to any biological function expressible in temporal logic LTL, and to broad model classes and perturbation types. Moreover, we propose a computational approach and an implementation in BIOCHAM 2.8 for the automated estimation of the robustness of a given behavior with respect to a given set of perturbations. The applicability and biological relevance of our approach is demonstrated by testing and improving the robustness of the timed behavior of a synthetic transcriptional cascade that could be used as a biological timer for synthetic biology applications.