Computational Modeling of Human Metabolism and Its Application to Systems Biomedicine
Modern high-throughput techniques offer immense opportunities to investigate whole-systems behavior, such as those underlying human diseases. However, the complexity of the data presents challenges in interpretation, and new avenues are needed to address the complexity of both diseases and data. Constraint-based modeling is one formalism applied in systems biology. It relies on a genome-scale reconstruction that captures extensive biochemical knowledge regarding an organism. The human genome-scale metabolic reconstruction is increasingly used to understand normal cellular and disease states because metabolism is an important factor in many human diseases. The application of human genome-scale reconstruction ranges from mere querying of the model as a knowledge base to studies that take advantage of the model’s topology and, most notably, to functional predictions based on cell- and condition-specific metabolic models built based on omics data.