A chemical engineer's perspective on health and disease

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Scopus citations


Chemical process systems engineering considers complex supply chains which are coupled networks of dynamically interacting systems. The quest to optimize the supply chain while meeting robustness and flexibility constraints in the face of ever changing environments necessitated the development of theoretical and computational tools for the analysis, synthesis and design of such complex engineered architectures. However, it was realized early on that optimality is a complex characteristic required to achieve proper balance between multiple, often competing, and objectives. As we begin to unravel life's intricate complexities, we realize that that living systems share similar structural and dynamic characteristics; hence much can be learned about biological complexity from engineered systems. In this article, we draw analogies between concepts in process systems engineering and conceptual models of health and disease; establish connections between these concepts and physiologic modelling; and describe how these mirror onto the physiological counterparts of engineered systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)665-671
Number of pages7
JournalComputers and Chemical Engineering
StatePublished - Dec 4 2014

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Computer Science Applications


  • Disease
  • Health
  • Homeostasis
  • Systems engineering

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