Temperature compensation through Systems Biology.

P. Ruoff, M. Zakhartsev, H.V. Westerhoff

    Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


    Temperature has a strong influence on most individual biochemical reactions. Despite this, many organisms have the remarkable ability to keep certain physiological fluxes approximately constant over an extended temperature range. In this study, we show how temperature compensation can be considered as a pathway phenomenon rather than the result of a single-enzyme property. Using metabolic control analysis, it is possible to identify reaction networks that exhibit temperature compensation. Because most activation enthalpies are positive, temperature compensation of a flux can occur when certain control coefficients are negative. This can be achieved in networks with branching reactions or if the first irreversible reaction is regulated by a feedback loop. Hierarchical control analysis shows that networks that are dynamic through regulated gene expression or signal transduction may offer additional possibilities to bring the apparent activation enthalpies close to zero and lead to temperature compensation. A calorimetric experiment with yeast provides evidence that such a dynamic temperature adaptation can actually occur. © 2007 The Authors.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)940-950
    JournalThe FEBS Journal
    Publication statusPublished - 2007


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