Defining Pathway Assembly and Exploring its Applications

04/19/2018
by   Alastair Murray, et al.
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How do we estimate the probability of an abundant objects' formation, with minimal context or assumption about is origin? To explore this we have previously introduced the concept of pathway assembly (as pathway complexity), in a graph based context, as an approach to quantify the number of steps required to assembly an object based on a hypothetical history of an objects formation. By partitioning an object into its irreducible parts and counting the steps by which the object can be reassembled from those parts, and considering the probabilities of such steps, the probability that an abundance of identical such objects could form in the absence of biological or technologically driven processes can be estimated. Here we give a general definition of pathway assembly from first principles to cover a wide range of case, and explore some of these cases and applications which exemplify the unique features of this approach.

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