We congratulate our colleagues Darta Maija Zake and Santa Prikule with finishing their studies!
Darta is now the Master of Science in Biology, while Santa obtained her Bachelor Degree in Biology.
The title of Darta's master thesis is "Physiology-based mathematical modelling of metformin for mice and human". The thesis is dedicated to the pharmacokinetic study of the peroral antidiabetic drug metformin. The purpose of the thesis was to find out the concentration dynamics in major compartments of metformin action in the human body. To achieve this goal a physiology-based pharmacokinetic model of metformin was developed using experimental data from mice. Using parameter estimation techniques and the mouse model, plasma-tissue partition coefficients (Ktp) of the major compartments of metformin action were established and used to predict metformin pharmacokinetics in the major compartments of metformin action in humans. The developed model can be used to predict metformin concentration dynamically in tissues where experimental data are unavailable. The thesis is elaborated and defended within the project "Mathematical model of pharmacokinetics for personalized optimization of metformin therapy" funded by the Latvian Council of Science (project No: lzp-2018/2-0088).
Santa defended her bachelor thesis "Mathematical modeling of Crypthecodinium cohnii metabolism for the optimization of DHA production". In the thesis, two mathematical models were presented. A genome-scale stoichiometric model was improved through the use of several COBRA and RAVEN toolbox functions which enabled the automated integration of reactions leading to the end product synthesis- DHA. A novel kinetic model was created which allowed the simulation of saturated fatty acid synthesis using glucose - one of the substrates used by the dinoflagellate Crypthecodinium cohnii. The thesis is part of the project "Crypthecodinium cohnii and Zymomonas mobilis syntrophy for production of omega 3 fatty acid from byproducts of biofuel and sugar industry" funded by the European Regional Development Fund (project No. 22.214.171.124/18/A/022).