Scientific activities of the various Research Units
Our project aims at understanding the emergent properties of biological matter at the system-level by using quantitative methods of theoretical physics. Our goal is to develop physics theories and predictive, testable models to describe the properties of the mentioned systems by using methods and concepts from statistical mechanics and field theory, supported by advanced computer simulations. We focus, in particular, on the investigation of the structure and function of biopolymers such as proteins, DNA and RNA, and on the description of the states of single-cells and their collective behaviours in health and disease. The applications of our work range from the understanding of intrinsically disordered proteins and their way of action, to the processes that control gene activity and drive pathologies such as cancer and congenital disorders, to the physical and molecular mechanisms whereby our genome self-organised in a complex functional structure, to the homeostatic effectors of cell growth and cycle, to the collective dynamics of cell systems, such as the brain, up to the development of innovative methods of data exploration in the growing field of physics inspired computational and Machine Learning approaches. Our results can have important implications in academic research, industry and biomedicine alike.