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A new (mathematical) look into biology

SIMAI 2018 – Sapienza Università di Roma

July 2, 2018 – July 6, 2018

The original idea is based on the observation that the synergy between mathematics and biomedical sciences has reached nowadays a significant maturity, that is well-documented by the countless number of joint collaborations and topics involved, spanning from genome sequencing to organisms description, as a consequence of the high level of heterogeneity inherent in the living world [1, 2, 6].

The Mini-Symposium entitled Attempts of a mathematical uprising for restructuring biomedical sciences is scientifically organized by Donatella Donatelli — Dipartimento di Ingegneria, Scienze dell’Informazione e Matematica (DISIM), Università dell’Aquila, Italy (, Corrado Mascia — Dipartimento di Matematica G. Castelnuovo, Sapienza, Università di Roma, Italy (, Chiara Simeoni — Laboratoire de Mathématique J.A. Dieudonné, Université Nice Sophia Antipolis, France (

The purpose of the Mini-Symposium is to provide genuine and critical presentations on different aspects concurring to the discussion, with particular attention to the definition of a rigorous language [4, 3, 5] appropriate for biological phenomena and useful for medical applications. The aim is to give the opportunity for a truly interdisciplinary exchange of the research outcome in the field of systems biology from epistemology to experimental medicine, passing through applied mathematics, biostatistics and scientific computing.

The SIMAI Mini-Symposium will be held on Thursday, July 5th, 2018, and divided into two sections: a morning session stemming from 10.30 to 13.00, and an afternoon session from 14.30 to 17.00, scheduled as follows.

Section I.

Giuseppe Longo — CNRS and École Normale Supérieure, Paris, and Department of Immunology, Tufts University, Boston (keynote)

Historicized invariance and rare events in systems of life, some mathematical challenges.


Alessandro Giuliani — Istituto Superiore di Sanità, Rome

Sloppy models: why in Biomedical Sciences too much precision is a curse.


Maël Montévil — Institut de Recherche et d’Innovation, Paris

What first principles for mathematical modeling in biology?


Ramon G. Plaza — Instituto de Investigaciones en Matematicas Aplicadas y en Sistemas, Universidad Nacional Autonoma de México, Mexico City

Mathematical modelling of the tumour growth paradox using cancer stem cells.


Licia Romagnoli — Dipartimento di Ingegneria, Scienze dell’Informazione e Matematica (DISIM), Università dell’Aquila

PDE’s models for cerebrospinal fluids: a mathematical theory.


Section II.

Philip K. Maini — Wolfson Centre for Mathematical Biology, Mathematical Institute, Oxford (keynote)

Mathematical modelling of angiogenesis.


Simona Dinicola — Dipartimento di Medicina Sperimentale (DMS), Sapienza, Università di Roma

EMT-MET as paradigmatic cases for mathematical modelling in biology.


Morena La Monaca — Project consulting srl, Roma

Data Science

Data Mining for Biomedical Sciences.


Pierfrancesco Moschetta — Dipartimento di Matematica G. Castelnuovo, Sapienza Università di Roma

Fathoming the Gatenby-Gawlinski model.


Donato Pera — Dipartimento di Ingegneria, Scienze dell’Informazione e Matematica (DISIM), Universita’ dell’Aquila, L’Aquila

On the efficient numerical simulation of heterogenous anisotropic diffusion models of tumor invasion using GPUs.


The group of speakers involves more experienced scientists as well as young researchers, joining together applied mathematicians, experimental biologists, and technologists of private enterprises, with the aim of promoting favorable further interactions.


The MiniSymposium also intend to celebrate the ESMTB-EMS Year of Mathematical Biology 2018 —

An upcoming Special Issue of Organisms is going to be dedicated to the proceedings of the Mini-Symposium.



N Cohen J.E., 2004 Mathematics is Biology’s next microscope, only better; Biology is Mathematics’ next Physics, only better, PLoS Biol. Vol 2, no.12, pp. 2017-2023.

Donatelli D., Marcati P., Romagnoli L., 2017 Analysis of solutions for a cerebrospinal fluid model, arXiv:1705.07744.

Longo G., Montevil M., 2014 Perspectives on Organisms: Biological Time, Symmetries and Singularities, Springer, Berlin.

Noble D., 2010 Biophysics and systems biology, Phil. Trans. R. Soc. A, vol 368, pp. 1125-1139.

Pillay S., Byrne H. M., Maini P. K., 2017 Modeling angiogenesis: A discrete to continuum description, Physical Review E, vol 95, 012410.

Simeoni C., Dinicola S., Cucina A., Mascia C., Bizzarri M., 2017 Systems biology approach and mathematical modeling for analyzing phase-space switch during epithelial-mesenchymal transition, Methods in Molecular Biology 1702, Springer Protocols enschein and Ana Soto.



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