Dr Christian Yates


Below is a brief list of my current research interests. If you are interested in any of these areas and would like to collaborate or are interested in pursuing a D.Phil. (Ph.D.) with me in Oxford then please email me on yatesc@maths.ox.ac.uk

Cell migration

I work in collaboration with experimentalists in Edinburgh on a gene called Kit! Mutations in Kit can cause slower migration of melanocyte neural crest cells leading to non-pigmented areas of skin. I work on linking two different modelling paradigms (discrete stochastic and deterministic continuum) for cell migration and exploiting their complementary advantages when modelling a biological system.

Stochastic simulation methodologies

With a variety of collaborators and DPhil students I work on the development of efficient stochastic simulation algorithms. In part I work on developing general methodologies for stochastic simulation (Multi-level for continuous time Markov processes, recycling random numbers in the SSA, avoiding negative populations in tau-leaping). I also work on the development of simulation algorithms specifically designed to speed up the simulation of spatially extended systems (hybrid methods, adaptive mesh refinement for position-jump processes).

Sleeping sickness

In collaboration with experimentalists from Nottingham and Oxford I work on modelling the methods by which the causative parasites in the disease sleeping sickness are able to effectively evade the immune system.

Nematode dynamics

I model the interaction dynamics between migrating nematode worms and more sedentary bacteria which act as food for the worms. We use cellular automaton/PDE hybrid models informed by experimental data.

The evolution of pleitropy

I model the potential for the evolution of pleitropy as a mechanism by which cheating is regulated in bacterial communities. We use experimental data to inform our stochastic evolution models.

Collective motion

I model the collective migration of locusts (and other animal) swarms using self-propelled particle models.In collaboration with scientists in Slovakia I have also started modelling decision making in ants.

Egg patterning

In collaboration with experimental biologists in Harvard and Yale I contrive computer models which are able to investigate the possible mechanisms by which egg patterns form.

Cell Tracking

Tracking free-swimming bacteria under the microscope is a highly non-trivial problem. In collaboration with biochemists and mathematicians I have helped to develop a tracking algorithm which is capable of achieving this task very efficiently. We currently have a patent pending on the method.

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