Department of Microbiology & Molecular Genetics at Michigan State University

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J H Jackson & P A Herring
on Bacterial Genomics & Physiology

Information Structure & Dynamics of Gene and Genome Evolution      The major research interest for the J-Lab is a study of bacterial and archaeal genomes as information systems that determine the physiological states of an organism.  A larger goal is to model the dynamics of information evolution and exchange in bacteria and archaea, and to derive a theory base to explain the origin, evolution and function of genes and chromosomes.  Our goal is to discover and model gene-specific and genome-specific information that defines metabolic properties and physiological behavior of bacteria in adaptive response to their environment(s).   This research probes the limits of coding space, protein mobility, and variation space, and seeks to understand the physiological consequences of such limits.  
     We seek to combine mathematical and computational methods to model and simulate the function of natural microbial systems.
Integration of Mathematics in Biology
     An educational focus of major interest to me is the integration of mathematics into the study of biology at the undergraduate and graduate level.  My teaching approach is to prepare students to view organisms and their environments as biological systems, to ask critical questions about how these systems work and interact, and to design experiments that yield quantitative measures of systems behavior for construction of mathematical models to simulate that behavior. 
  Select publications to contribute a  theory base  relating evolution of  genomic information and physiology in bacteria. 
    Jackson, J. H. & C. R. MacCluer.  Hyperbolic saturation.  Bull. Math. Biol. 72:1315-1322 (2010).
    Jackson, J. H., T. M. Schmidt, & P. A. Herring.  A systems appoach to model natural variation in reactive properties of bacterial ribosomes.   BMC Systems Biology 2:62 (2008).
    Jackson, J. H.  Bioinformatics & Genomics. In Math & Bio 2010, Linking Undergraduate Disciplines, L. Steen (editor).  Mathematical Assoc. Am. (2005).

  Svetic, R. E., C. R. MacCluer, C. O. Buckley, K. L. Smythe, & J. H. Jackson.  A metabolic force for gene clustering in bacteria.  Bull. Math. Biol. 66:559-581 (2004).
    Buckley, C. O., D. Stephens, P. A. Herring, & J. H. Jackson.  %(G+C) variation and prediction by a model of bacterial gene transfer and codon adaptation.  OMICS: J. Integ. Biol. 6:259-272 (2002).
    Jackson, J. H., S. H. Harrison, & P. A. Herring.  A theoretical limit to coding space in chromosomes of bacteria.  OMICS: J. Integ. Biol.  6: 115-121 (2002).
     Herring, P. A. and J. H. Jackson.  Theoretical indicators of enzyme reaction specificity from conserved information in amino acid side-chains.  Micro. & Compar. Genomics 5:75-87 (2000).
     Jackson, J. H., R. George, & P. A. Herring.  Vectors of Shannon information from Fourier signals characterizing base periodicity in genes and genomes.  Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. 268:289-292 (2000).
    Williamson, R. M., J. Hetherington, & J. H. Jackson.  Detection of fundamental principles and a level of order for large-scale gene clustering on the Escherichia coli chromosome.  J. Molec. Evol. 36:347-360 (1993).

Julius Jackson, J-Lab MC

Brief Biographical Summaries

 Advanced Study

   Models at the Edges
     Primal Chromosome model
     Coding Space Limit model
     Limited Protein Mobility model
     Natural Variation Space Limit model
     Variable Translation Rate model

   Edges and Limits
     Beginnings of chromosome evolution.
     Coding entropy for genes in bacteria.
     Organization of proteins in bacteria.
     Visualization of limits to gene variation.
     Ribosomal determinants of lifestyles.


Update June 2013 (
Contact Information for the J-Lab Current & Past Participants in J-Lab Research Interests and Activity Abstracts of Selected Publications Technical Reports, Short Reviews, Concepts and Perspectives J-Lab Internal Database and MYCROW DataSystem; currently limited to J-Lab use ONLY Student Information, course and section numbers, descriptions and course availability Courses in development, planned courses, and new course concepts You are about to enter A DIFFERENT WORLD!! You are at the door to a DIFFERENT WORLD, where not all is science and fomality stops at the door! Come into the Jackson Family Den, and see Who's & Views and sometimes News! What's Up?! a perspective on conepts, observations & ideas
Julius Jackson, The J-Lab MC
Julius Jackson, The J-Lab MC

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