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Study of conditions for the emergence of cellular communication using self-adaptive multi-agent systems

Sébastien Maignan 1
1 IRIT-SMAC - Systèmes Multi-Agents Coopératifs
IRIT - Institut de recherche en informatique de Toulouse
Abstract : Cells are complex entities that interact together to form higher organisms with emergent behaviors. To coordinate their actions, cells use chemical messenger molecules that influence the behavior of their cellular environment. This communication could be in the form of simple orders or complex and dependent of various internal and external conditions. The emergence of these communication protocols is the focus of this thesis as well as its nature, simple or structured as a language. An adaptive multi-agent system (AMAS) is developed to study the necessary conditions for the emergence of cooperation and communication in the context of multicellular tissues. Starting from a simplistic model of eukaryotic cell, the cell agent behavior is developed and the global system evolution explored to identify the minimal and necessary conditions for the apparition of communication. The difficulty when compared with other multi-agent systems lies in the limited interactions between agents, since all information exchange must pass through the environment of the cells, as molecules. In this respect, cellular coordination depends on numerous factors like diffusion or chemical stability of the molecules. One challenge in this study is to be able to find a simulation methodology that does not introduce any bias towards the expected system behavior, namely communication. This imposes to avoid any methodology using global fitness functions like neural networks or genetic algorithms. Another challenge is the exploration of the parameter space of the system that grows exponentially with its size. It must be efficient and bias free. The cooperation paradigm used in the AMAS framework is well suited for this task and allows for reasonable simulation times. This work presents the state of the art in multicellular simulations and their potential use in this context. Then the AMAS system is developed step by step to explore the conditions for the emergence of communication. At each step, the efficiency of the methodology is discussed and experimental results are presented to verify that the approach is unbiased.
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Sébastien Maignan. Study of conditions for the emergence of cellular communication using self-adaptive multi-agent systems. Artificial Intelligence [cs.AI]. Université Paul Sabatier - Toulouse III, 2018. English. ⟨NNT : 2018TOU30094⟩. ⟨tel-02094368⟩

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