The goal of our group is to uncover mathematical laws that govern the living world. The 21st century has seen an explosion of quantitative data in Biology and one of the great challenges is to develop equally quantitative models that are capable of explaining all this data; for such models to be useful they must also provide experimentally testable predictions.
If physics is the science that seeks to describe Nature using the language of mathematics then physical biology is that part of physics that concerns itself with the living world.
Quantitative theory has yet to find its rightful place as a tool for examining living systems. Mathematical modeling in biology is often employed to fit experimental data. This approach rarely leads to new insights and serves only to reinforce and possibly make more quantitative the already established interpretation of the data.
On the other hand, theory as practiced in the physical sciences has lead to new insights and breakthroughs, often marching ahead of experiments; the atomic nature of matter and the relativity of time, are but two well known examples.
Establishing theory and mathematical modeling as a tool for making biological discoveries is the ultimate goal of the research conducted in the Kondev group.