ANR Maximic (2017-2021) – Optimal control of microbial cells by natural and synthetic strategies

ANR project no. ANR-17-CE40-0024

Joint project with

Inria Grenoble Rhône-Alpes Centre de Recherche Inria Grenoble – Rhône-Alpes – IBIS

Inria Sophia Antipolis-Méditerranée Centre de Recherche Inria Sophia Antipolis-Méditerranée – Biocore & McTAO teams

UGA-LIPhy Laboratoire Interdisciplinaire de Physique

The growth of microorganisms is fundamentally an optimization problem which consists in dynamically allocating resources to cellular functions so as to maximize growth rate or another fitness criterion. Simple ordinary differential equation models, called self-replicators, have been used to formulate this problem in the framework of optimal and feedback control theory, allowing observations in microbial physiology to be explained. The resulting control problems are very challenging due to the nonlinearity of the models, parameter uncertainty, the coexistence of different time-scales, a dynamically changing environment, and various other physical and chemical constraints. Maximic aims at developing novel theoretical approaches for addressing these challenges in order to (i) study natural resource allocation strategies in microorganisms and (ii) propose new synthetic control strategies for biotechnological applications.