IISER Pune
INDIAN INSTITUTE OF SCIENCE EDUCATION AND RESEARCH (IISER) PUNE
where tomorrow’s science begins today
An Autonomous Institution, Ministry of Human Resource Development, Govt. of India
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Seminars and Colloquia

Physics

Probing the physical basis of living systems, working towards a physics of life 
 
Mon, Aug 05, 2019,   03:15 PM at Seminar Hall 31, 2nd Floor, Main Building

Dr. Shashi Thutupalli
NCBS, Bangalore

Feynman, in his Lectures on Physics, gives a succinct description of physics: "Physicists always have a habit of taking the simplest example of any phenomenon and calling it “physics,” leaving the more complicated examples to become the concern of other fields — say of applied mathematics, electrical engineering, chemistry, or crystallography [or biology].”. What then, is the physics of life? And, given the complexity, where do we start? 
In this talk, I will try to make a case for studying the physical basis for metabolism, the veritable engine of life. I will go through one of the very few quantitative "laws" in biology -- the so called Kleiber's law -- relating metabolic activity with organismal body mass. The data spans roughly 20 orders of magnitude ranging from a single mitochondrion to the largest mammals in a power-law relationship. After detailing some theoretical frameworks to understand this data and also their shortcomings, I will briefly describe our own proposal and efforts in this direction. 

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