Molecular conformations and game theory

Abstract : Proteins and Ribonucleic Acids are the workhorses of many cellular processes.Understanding their functions, structures and interactions is an important challenge.Experimental methods provide actual information on structure and dynamics of molecules.However they have limitations : they cannot be applied to all molecules, and they need a lot of resources.Prediction methods are almost automatic ways of obtaining structural information.They are tested on experimental data to attest their reliability.We present, here, approaches tackling different problems.We develop a kinematics-based procedure to morph a RNA molecule between conformations while preserving its secondary structure.We obtain results comparable to state of the art methods showing that our selection of degrees of freedom is efficient.Furthermore we only use sparse information allowing for various kinds of experimental inputs.We also look at the protein structure prediction problem from a game theory angle.We represent the protein dynamics as a game, in which players are amino acids and strategies are dihedrals angles.The structure prediction can thus be seen as finding equilibrium in a multi-players game where all players have utility functions corresponding to the quality of the protein structure.We showed that a well-known no-regret algorithm, called Hedge, guarantees dominated strategies to vanish and a local convergence toward Nash equilibria.Furthermore restricting our analysis to potential games we showed that dual-averaging regularized learning algorithms converge toward a Nash equilibrium almost surely.
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Amélie Héliou. Molecular conformations and game theory. Bioinformatics [q-bio.QM]. Université Paris-Saclay, 2017. English. ⟨NNT : 2017SACLX033⟩. ⟨tel-01633869⟩

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