Poised for survival: Criticality, natural selection, and excitation-transcription coupling
Abbreviated Journal Title
Int. J. Biochem. Cell Biol.
Neurons; Genes; Evolution; Boolean networks; LZ complexity; DIFFERENTIAL-EQUATIONS; BOOLEAN NETWORKS; NERVOUS-SYSTEM; AMYGDALA; EVOLUTION; CREB; BRAIN; PLASTICITY; COGNITION; EMOTION; Biochemistry & Molecular Biology; Cell Biology
Neurologically-complex species utilize two intricately coupled information-processing systems to adapt to their social and natural environments. Action potentials (APs) facilitate rapid responses to the nearly continuous fluctuations in the animal's surroundings. By contrast, genetic encodings comprise a molecular memory of ancient adaptive responses expressed as cognitive, emotional, or behavioral phenotypes. The linking of the two systems via intracellular Ca2+ networks which address transcription factors - e.g., cAMP response element-binding protein (CREB) - is an appropriate focus for the biology of human behavior. Computational modeling utilizing Boolean networks (BNs) is a suitable qualitative method, requiring no kinetic information, for eliciting the systems' architectural properties. In particular, BNs can reveal critical intracellular regimes of possible evolutionary significance. As a platform for future research, we propose that those networks sufficiently robust to attenuate damaging intracellular noise and deleterious mutations, yet sufficiently close to chaos to permit or amplify adaptive noise and favorable mutations, would be favored by natural selection. Critical regimes of this type would be, literally, "poised for survival", and would stabilize and promote the survival of their correlated cultural phenotypes. (C) 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
International Journal of Biochemistry & Cell Biology
"Poised for survival: Criticality, natural selection, and excitation-transcription coupling" (2015). Faculty Bibliography 2010s. 6851.