Hi, I am Salva Duran-Nebreda, a Synthetic biologist and Complex Systems researcher interested in the Major Transitions in Evolution. In particular, I am fascinated by how individuality shifts as new levels of selection are created and how emergent properties appear in collective systems.
My research includes aspects of Development, Tissue Architecture, Pattern Formation, Evolutionary Biology and Artificial Life. In my research I have had the opportunity to use wetlab and drylab approaches, including mathematical analysis, agent-based modeling, engineering of emergence through synthetic biology and thorough charaterization of complex organs and tissues.
Currently, I am trying to understand how order emerges in tissue architecture in plants (including Arabidopsis thaliana) in the university of Birmingham. To do so, we are imaging and anotating organs of different plant species, generating the corresponding cellular connectivity networks and applying network analysis to generate insight into the production and maintainance of order in these systems. With this approach we hope to be able to provide a solid foundation for tissue engineering, as well as characterize the evolution of complexity in our biosphere.
Previously, I worked in modeling the transition to multicellularity in different scenarios, synthetically producing spatial patterns similar to those observed during development, population dynamics of terraformation and the synthetic biology of collective behaviour.
Synthetic Pattern Formation in E.coli & modeling the emergence of multicellularity under exogenous stress.
Confocal imaging of Arabidopsis petal, segmented to produce the cell contact networks.