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Computational Modeling of Biological Networks

A Research Apprenticeship at Friday Harbor Laboratories

What is the course about?

There is increasing recognition among biologists that understanding biological systems of even modest complexity requires the aid of computational modeling. These models have greatly advanced our understanding of biological systems responsible for movement, division, pattern formation, and cell fate commitment. Additionally, models that reconstruct these systems have revealed unexpected emergent behavior such as astonishing robustness to variability and operation at or near theoretical optima.

This apprenticeship will provide an opportunity to build research-level, biologically realistic simulations of networks to gain deep insights into their workings. Students will gain valuable research experience working closely with a faculty mentor. Basic lectures, exercises, and readings will introduce apprentices to fundamentals of gene networks, empirical and computational analysis of gene network dynamics, and computer modeling of such networks.


One semester (or 2 quarters) of calculus and introductory biology, a willingness to immerse yourself in a fascinating scientific problem, and an enthusiastic determination to learn. Students at all levels are welcome to apply: undergraduates, graduates, graduate students, postdocs, and faculty.

Financial Support:

Apprentices will receive $3000 to help defray the costs of tuition and room and board while living at Friday Harbor Laboratories.

Application deadline: July 1, 2006 For additional information and application instructions: http://depts.washington.edu/fhl/studentApprentice2006.html#autumn3