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Computational systems biology.


To understand complex biological systems requires the integration of experimental and computational research -- in other words a systems biology approach. Computational biology, through pragmatic modelling and theoretical exploration, provides a powerful foundation from which to address critical scientific questions head-on. The reviews in this Insight cover many different aspects of this energetic field, although all, in one way or another, illuminate the functioning of modular circuits, including their robustness, design and manipulation. Computational systems biology addresses questions fundamental to our understanding of life, yet progress here will lead to practical innovations in medicine, drug discovery and engineering.