From its very beginnings Molecular Biology focused on simple enough model systems that captured the essential complexity of biology, in order to extract the general molecular mechanisms underlying the functioning of the cell. Similarly Systems Biology and Synthetic Biology have benefited from the use of simple model systems. I will introduce examples of such experimental model systems and show how even the simplest of model systems in Systems and Synthetic Biology can be used to unravel open fundamental questions of biology.
Calin Guet studied Physics and Molecular Biology at Princeton University as an undergraduate. He did his PhD with Stanislas Leibler at Princeton University and the Rockefeller University, working on the early basis of what is now Systems and Synthetic Biology. After postdoctoral work at the University of Chicago and Harvard on the single-cell biology of bacteria, he moved to IST Austria where he started his own research group working on questions that lie at the interface of Ecology, Evolution, Molecular Biology and Physiology of bacteria and phages.