public 01:09:47

Casey Rodriguez : The Radiative Uniqueness Conjecture for Bubbling Wave Maps

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One of the most fundamental questions in partial differential equations is that of regularity and the possible breakdown of solutions. We will discuss this question for solutions to a canonical example of a geometric wave equation; energy critical wave maps. Break-through works of Krieger-Schlag-Tataru, Rodnianski-Sterbenz and Rapha ̈el-Rodnianski produced examples of wave maps that develop singularities in finite time. These solutions break down by concentrating energy at a point in space (via bubbling a harmonic map) but have a regular limit, away from the singular point, as time approaches the final time of existence. The regular limit is referred to as the radiation. This mechanism of breakdown occurs in many other PDE including energy critical wave equations, Schro ̈dinger maps and Yang-Mills equations. A basic question is the following: • Can we give a precise description of all bubbling singularities for wave maps with the goal of finding the natural unique continuation of such solutions past the singularity? In this talk, we will discuss recent work (joint with J. Jendrej and A. Lawrie) which is the first to directly and explicitly connect the radiative component to the bubbling dynamics by constructing and classifying bubbling solutions with a simple form of prescribed radiation. Our results serve as an important first step in formulating and proving the following Radiative Uniqueness Conjecture for a large class of wave maps: every bubbling solution is uniquely characterized by it’s radiation, and thus, every bubbling solution can be uniquely continued past blow-up time while conserving energy.

public 01:24:47

Franca Hoffmann : Gradient Flows: From PDE to Data Analysis.

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Certain diffusive PDEs can be viewed as infinite-dimensional gradient flows. This fact has led to the development of new tools in various areas of mathematics ranging from PDE theory to data science. In this talk, we focus on two different directions: model-driven approaches and data-driven approaches. In the first part of the talk we use gradient flows for analyzing non-linear and non-local aggregation-diffusion equations when the corresponding energy functionals are not necessarily convex. Moreover, the gradient flow structure enables us to make connections to well-known functional inequalities, revealing possible links between the optimizers of these inequalities and the equilibria of certain aggregation-diffusion PDEs. We present recent results on properties of these equilibria and long-time asymptotics of solutions in the setting where attractive and repulsive forces are in competition. In the second part, we use and develop gradient flow theory to design novel tools for data analysis. We draw a connection between gradient flows and Ensemble Kalman methods for parameter estimation. We introduce the Ensemble Kalman Sampler - a derivative-free methodology for model calibration and uncertainty quantification in expensive black-box models. The interacting particle dynamics underlying our algorithm can be approximated by a novel gradient flow structure in a modified Wasserstein metric which reflects particle correlations. The geometry of this modified Wasserstein metric is of independent theoretical interest.

public 01:34:43

Bruce Donald : Some mathematical and computational challenges arising in structural molecular biology

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Computational protein design is a transformative field with exciting prospects for advancing both basic science and translational medical research. New algorithms blend discrete and continuous mathematics to address the challenges of creating designer proteins. I will discuss recent progress in this area and some interesting open problems. I will motivate this talk by discussing how, by using continuous geometric representations within a discrete optimization framework, broadly-neutralizing anti-HIV-1 antibodies were computationally designed that are now being tested in humans - the designed antibodies are currently in eight clinical trials (See https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/results?cond=&term=VRC07&cntry=&state=&city=&dist= ), one of which is Phase 2a (NCT03721510). These continuous representations model the flexibility and dynamics of biological macromolecules, which are an important structural determinant of function. However, reconstruction of biomolecular dynamics from experimental observables requires the determination of a conformational probability distribution. These distributions are not fully constrained by the limited information from experiments, making the problem ill-posed in the sense of Hadamard. The ill-posed nature of the problem comes from the fact that it has no unique solution. Multiple or even an infinite number of solutions may exist. To avoid the ill-posed nature, the problem must be regularized by making (hopefully reasonable) assumptions. I will present new ways to both represent and visualize correlated inter-domain protein motions (See Figure). We use Bingham distributions, based on a quaternion fit to circular moments of a physics-based quadratic form. To find the optimal solution for the distribution, we designed an efficient, provable branch-and-bound algorithm that exploits the structure of analytical solutions to the trigonometric moment problem. Hence, continuous conformational PDFs can be determined directly from NMR measurements. The representation works especially well for multi-domain systems with broad conformational distributions. Ultimately, this method has parallels to other branches of applied mathematics that balance discrete and continuous representations, including physical geometric algorithms, robotics, computer vision, and robust optimization. I will advocate for using continuous distributions for protein modeling, and describe future work and open problems.