Imperial College London


Faculty of EngineeringDepartment of Chemical Engineering

Reader in Biological&Chemical Information Processing Systems



+44 (0)20 7594 6633j.krishnan




C503Roderic Hill BuildingSouth Kensington Campus





Date Role
2006- Lecturer, Senior Lecturer in Chemical Engineering, Imperial College London
2001-2005 Associate Research Scientist, Dept. of Electrical Engineering, Johns Hopkins University
1994-2000 PhD, Chemical Engineering, Princeton University. Thesis Title: Patterns and their instabilities in CO oxidation on Pt(110).
1990-1994 B.Tech, Chemical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Madras (Chennai).

Research Interests





The unifying theme of the research in my group is the elucidation and manipulation of information processing in cells and tissues/cell populations. This is achieved through a combination of (i) Mathematical modelling (ii) Theoretical work (iii) Systems approaches, including tool development and (iv) Collaboration with a range of experimentalists including cell biologists, biomedical scientists and engineers and synthetic biologists. Characteristic of this research area is the diversity of problems at different levels and scales, the broad potential for application and the rich confluence of the natural sciences (biology, physics, chemistry), mathematics and engineering, including systems engineering. There are also non-biological analogues and extensions of this work. This is discussed briefly below and in more detail in the research page.

The regulation of most aspects of cellular life and functioning is accomplished by complex and sophisticated biochemical (signal transduction,metabolic) and gene regulatory networks.  Understanding the functioning of  and information processing through such networks at both the intracellular level as well as the intercellular level (accounting for cellular communication and interaction) is of importance from both basic and applied perspectives. This is because information processing through these networks is the key ingredient which allows us to understand how cells regulate different processes, respond to their environment, interact with one another and affords ways of controlling or manipulating them through synthetic and other means. Given the complexity and significant non-linearity of these systems, elucidating and engineering information processing presents significant challenges and opportunities for systems science and engineering.

The research in my group employs an interdisciplinary engineering approach in this context, and has two broad strands. (i) Mathematical and computational modelling in a selection of concrete problems of basic and applied interest, in collaboration with a range of experimentalists (cell biologists, biomedical scientists and engineers, synthetic biologists). (ii) Theoretical and systems work, including tool development towards the elucidation and systematic manipulation of information processing in cells and tissues.The research of each strand informs the other, and employing both approaches allows for a synergistic interplay between the two.



Centre for Process Systems Engineering

Institute of Systems and Synthetic Biology

Selected Publications

Journal Articles

Liu C, Krishnan J, Xu X-Y, 2013, Investigating the effects of ABC-transporter mediated acquired drug resistance mechanisms at the cell and tissue scale, Integrative Biology

Alam-Nazki A, Krishnan J, 2012, An investigation of spatial signal transduction in cellular networks, Bmc Systems Biology

Betney R, de Silva E, Mertens C, et al., 2012, Regulation of release factor expression through a translational negative feedback loop: a systems analysis, Rna

Alam-Nazki A, Krishnan J, 2010, A mathematical modelling framework for understanding chemorepulsive signal transduction in <i>Dictyostelium</i>, Journal of Theoretical Biology, Vol:266, ISSN:0022-5193, Pages:140-153

More Publications