Recent developments in research on catalytic reaction networks

Chiara Damiani
(Dept. of Informatics, Systems and Communication, University of Milan Bicocca, Italy)
Alessandro Filisetti
(European Centre for Living Technology, University Ca' Foscari of Venice, Italy)
Alex Graudenzi
(Dept. of Informatics, Systems and Communication, University of Milan Bicocca, Italy)
Marco Villani
(Dept. of Physics, Informatics and Mathematics, Modena and Reggio Emilia University)
Roberto Serra
(Dept. of Physics, Informatics and Mathematics, Modena and Reggio Emilia University)

Over the last years, analyses performed on a stochastic model of catalytic reaction networks have provided some indications about the reasons why wet-lab experiments hardly ever comply with the phase transition typically predicted by theoretical models with regard to the emergence of collectively self-replicating sets of molecule (also defined as autocatalytic sets, ACSs), a phenomenon that is often observed in nature and that is supposed to have played a major role in the emergence of the primitive forms of life. The model at issue has allowed to reveal that the emerging ACSs are characterized by a general dynamical fragility, which might explain the difficulty to observe them in lab experiments. In this work, the main results of the various analyses are reviewed, with particular regard to the factors able to affect the generic properties of catalytic reactions network, for what concerns, not only the probability of ACSs to be observed, but also the overall activity of the system, in terms of production of new species, reactions and matter.

In Alex Graudenzi, Giulio Caravagna, Giancarlo Mauri and Marco Antoniotti: Proceedings Wivace 2013 - Italian Workshop on Artificial Life and Evolutionary Computation (Wivace 2013), Milan, Italy, July 1-2, 2013, Electronic Proceedings in Theoretical Computer Science 130, pp. 3–13.
Published: 30th September 2013.

ArXived at: http://dx.doi.org/10.4204/EPTCS.130.3 bibtex PDF
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