Abstracts for the Moshe Flato Lecture Series 2008
Prof. Mikhail Gromov
Mathematical Structures Arising from the Classical Genetics.
Starting from the first paper by Mendel and followed by the Hardy-Weinberg principle there were many mathematical
treatments of algebraic/stochastic mechanisms of heredity. I will present some of these ideas in the context of
contemporary mathematics and then talk on the mathematical potential of the method of Sturtivant used by him
in the first gene mapping.
Prof. Maxim Kontsevich
Strings and instanton counting in classical integrable systems.
I will describe recent geometric constructions
in the classical subject of algebraic integrable systems (like the Euler top), related
with supersymmetric gauge theories and topological string theory in physics,
and such diverse subjects as hyperkähler geometry and Bridgeland stability in triangulated
categories in mathematics.
Prof. Giorgio Parisi
The mean field theory of spin glasses:
replica approach and recent rigorous results.
In this talk I will review the basic ideas behind the heuristic
replica approach to spin glasses and the recent rigorous results that
have been obtained using probabilistic method.
Although these theorems confirm the results of the replica approach
they use a quite different language and the justification of the
replica approach still remains open. In this framework I will propose
a new conjecture that could justify the replica approach.
Prof. S.R.Srinivasa Varadhan
Large Deviations and Interacting
In the study of large time behavior of interacting particle systems
large deviations play an important role. While studying the evolution
towards equilibrium of large systems over large scales in space and time
the probability measures involved are often far away from global equilibrium.
Methods that involve entropy and large deviations are useful in this context.
We will explore this with the help of some examples.
Prof. Michael Waterman
Eulerian Paths and DNA Sequence Assembly
In 1975 when Fred Sanger was developing dideoxy termination sequencing, he found Roger
Staden who developed the first computer program to assemble longer DNA sequences from the reads.
The reads were randomly located and oriented along the target DNA. Until recently all DNA sequence
assembly programs were further elaborations of his original technique. They often consist of three
major steps: compare all pairs of reads, find an approximate arrangement of the significant overlaps,
and multiple alignment for this arrangement. Staden used a greedy assembly version of this method.
In 1995 an elegant and entirely new approach was proposed in which each read is broken down into
shorter overlapping words, and then a certain graph is constructed so that Eulerian paths in this
graph correspond to the target DNA sequence. In this talk I will show how this graph is constructed
and give some examples of its operation. Today for new-generation sequencing, this Eulerian method
is the method of choice.