Understanding human metabolic physiology: a genome-to-systems approach

Trends Biotechnol. 2009 Jan;27(1):37-44. doi: 10.1016/j.tibtech.2008.09.007. Epub 2008 Nov 17.


The intricate nature of human physiology renders its study a difficult undertaking, and a systems biology approach is necessary to understand the complex interactions involved. Network reconstruction is a key step in systems biology and represents a common denominator because all systems biology research on a target organism relies on such a representation. With the recent development of genome-scale human metabolic networks, metabolic systems analysis is now possible and has initiated a shift towards human systems biology. Here, we review the important aspects of reconstructing a bottom-up human metabolic network, the network's role in modeling human physiology and the necessity for a community-based consensus reconstruction of human metabolism to be established.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Chromosome Mapping / methods*
  • Computer Simulation
  • Gene Expression Regulation / physiology*
  • Genome / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Models, Biological*
  • Proteome / metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction / physiology*
  • Systems Biology / methods*


  • Proteome