Research in Mathematical Biology
There follows a summary of the collaborative projects in mathematical biology involving members of the Applied Mathematics group.
Further abbreviations: BIO (School of Biological Sciences), CMP (School of Computing Sciences), ENV (School of Environmental Sciences), MED (School of Medicine).
Mathematical Modelling of Digestion (MTH, IFR)Research Team : Mark Blyth, Mark Cooker, Robert Penfold (IFR), Richard Purvis
We are currently working with a UEA-funded PhD student, Lydia Rickett, to develop a mathematical description of the Dynamic Gastric Model created by Martin Wickham and others at IFR (see picture below). The mathematical model will aim to describe the key digestive processes occurring in the fundus, the upper part of the stomach. Foodstuffs entering the fundus are acted upon by enzymes delivered via a gentle pulsing of the elastic wall.
Bacterial denitrification (MTH, CMP, BIO)Research Team : Mark Blyth, Vincent Moulton (CMP), David Richardson (BIO).
In this project, due to start in October 2009, we will be supervising an EPSRC-funded PhD student, Chris Bocking, on the mathematical modelling
of bacterial denitrification. This is a mechanism used by many bacterial species to support respiration in the absence of oxygen and is extensive
in nitrogen-rich agricultural soils. We will develop a mathematical model to study this process in the organism
Biomolecular aggregates and colloidal droplets (MTH, IFR, JIC)Research Team : Mark Cooker, Scott Grandison (CMP), Richard Morris (JIC), Emilian Parau, Robert Penfold (IFR), Richard Purvis.
Carl Roberts, a PhD student based in MTH, has been working with MTH and JIC in developing a mathematical model of shape
fluctuations in biomolecular aggregates (protein networks). He has also been working with MTH and IFR in studying shape fluctuations
in colloidal particles. The latter
in the food processing of emulsions such as yoghurt or whipped cream, where the aim is to create a stable product which does not separate over time.
Motion of red blood cells (MTH)Research Team : Mark Blyth
MB is supervising an EPSRC-funded PhD student, Hugh Woolfenden, who is studying the transit of red blood cells through capillary bifurcations.
Possible applications include the manufacture of synthetic blood.
Cytoplasmic streaming in root hairs (MTH, CMP, JIC)Research Team : Mark Blyth, Liam Dolan (JIC), Scott Grandison (CMP), Alexander Korobkin, Richard Morris (JIC).
Our goal in this project is to understand the role of cytoplasmic streaming
in the growth and development of plant root hairs.
Cytoplasmic streaming is
the mechanism by which a fluid streaming motion is established
in the cytoplasm inside a plant cell.
This project involves both theoretical modelling and laboratory experiments.
Foraging habits of grasshoppers (MTH, ENV)Research Team : Mark Blyth, Paul Dolman (ENV), Paul Hammerton, Mark Hassall (ENV)
Two of the Applied Group (MB and PH) are involved in this project supervision of a PhD student based in ENV, Tom Waite, who is studying the foraging habits of grasshoppers through a combination of theoretical ecology, fieldwork, and mathematical modelling.
Cartillage Modelling (MTH, BIO, MED)Research Team : Mark Blyth, Ian Clark (BIO), Simon Donell (MED), Alexander Korobkin, Richard Purvis, Nigel Scott.
An ongoing collaboration to model both healthy and aged cartillage in the human knee.