Cellulose biodegradation models; An example of cooperative interactions in structured populations

Pierre Emmanuel Jabin, Alexey Miroshnikov, Robin Young

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


We introduce various models for cellulose bio-degradation by micro-organisms. Those models rely on complex chemical mechanisms, involve the structure of the cellulose chains and are allowed to depend on the phenotypical traits of the population of micro-organisms. We then use the corresponding models in the context of multiple-trait populations. This leads to classical, logistic type, reproduction rates limiting the growth of large populations but also, and more surprisingly, limiting the growth of populations which are too small in a manner similar to the effects seen in populations requiring cooperative interactions (or sexual reproduction). This study thus offers a striking example of how some mechanisms resembling cooperation can occur in structured biological populations, even in the absence of any actual cooperation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2289-2318
Number of pages30
JournalESAIM: Mathematical Modelling and Numerical Analysis
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Analysis
  • Numerical Analysis
  • Modeling and Simulation
  • Computational Mathematics
  • Applied Mathematics


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