The quasi-steady state assumption in an enzymatically open system
Sherwood, William E.
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Citation (published version)E. Reznik, D. Segre, W. E. Sherwood. 2011. "The Quasi-Steady State Assumption in an Enzymatically Open System."
The quasi-steady state assumption (QSSA) forms the basis for rigorous mathematical justification of the Michaelis-Menten formalism commonly used in modeling a broad range of intracellular phenomena. A critical supposition of QSSA-based analyses is that the underlying biochemical reaction is enzymatically "closed," so that free enzyme is neither added to nor removed from the reaction over the relevant time period. Yet there are multiple circumstances in living cells under which this assumption may not hold, e.g. during translation of genetic elements or metabolic regulatory events. Here we consider a modified version of the most basic enzyme-catalyzed reaction which incorporates enzyme input and removal. We extend the QSSA to this enzymatically "open" system, computing inner approximations to its dynamics, and we compare the behavior of the full open system, our approximations, and the closed system under broad range of kinetic parameters. We also derive conditions under which our new approximations are provably valid; numerical simulations demonstrate that our approximations remain quite accurate even when these conditions are not satisfied. Finally, we investigate the possibility of damped oscillatory behavior in the enzymatically open reaction.