Engineering multicellular systems by cell-cell communication.


Journal Article (Review)

Synthetic biology encompasses the design of new biological parts and systems as well as the modulation of existing biological networks to generate novel functions. In recent years, increasing emphasis has been placed on the engineering of population-level behaviors using cell-cell communication. From the engineering perspective, cell-cell communication serves as a versatile regulatory module that enables coordination among cells in and between populations and facilitates the generation of reliable dynamics. In addition to exploring biological 'design principles' via the construction of increasingly complex dynamics, communication-based synthetic systems can be used as well-defined model systems to study ecological and social interactions such as competition, cooperation, and predation. Here we discuss the dynamic properties of cell-cell communication modules, how they can be engineered for synthetic circuit design, and applications of these systems.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Pai, A; Tanouchi, Y; Collins, CH; You, L

Published Date

  • August 2009

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 20 / 4

Start / End Page

  • 461 - 470

PubMed ID

  • 19733047

Pubmed Central ID

  • 19733047

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1879-0429

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0958-1669

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1016/j.copbio.2009.08.006


  • eng