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Analysing bio-molecular structures in a linguistic paradigm


We present an interdisciplinary project, Analysing biomolecular structures in a linguistic paradigm, involving the fields of linguistics, biology and computer science. The main axis of the project is the interpretation of biological data in a linguistic paradigm. The goal is to apply formal linguistics, theoretically related to mathematics and computer science, to describe the main structures of molecular biology, as well as provide a consistent framework to achieve a simple description of the functioning o f biomolecules.

The main objectives of the project are:
1. To elucidate whether the structure and functioning of DNA can be modelled by means of linguistic methods.
2. To study the structural and functional similarity between DNA and verbal language.
3. To construct a) a linguistic theoretical formalization for describing DNA, and b) a computational implementation to model its working.
4. To design a formal system able to generate and predict new DNA configurations.

The project is basically theoretical but it involves a number of experimental tools: laboratory observation and use of software as well as design of new programs. The research method combines online resources, biological software, linguistic theory and mathematics. It is important to point out that the project is not oriented to the acquisition of new data, but to the interpretation and classification of already existent information. We think the project is relevant to the present scientific panorama. In the last years, biology has undergone a deep r evolution in data acquisition thanks to specialized software. On the other hand, linguistics has developed abstract integrative theories for data interpretation. Interaction between both disciplines may help to develop a new scientific paradigm where observation and experience are supported by a consistent theoretical approach.

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