Simulation-Based Reasoning about Biological Pathways Using Petri Nets and ASP

Saadat Anwar, Chitta Baral, Katsumi Inoue

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations


It presents how Petri nets and answer set programming (ASP) can be used to answer simulation-based reasoning questions about biological systems. It shows how Petri nets can be encoded in ASP in an intuitive manner. The chapter discusses how additional Petri net extensions, such as firing semantics, reset arcs, inhibit arcs, read arcs, timed arcs, priority transitions and higher level extensions, such as colored tokens, can be easily encoded by making localized changes to the initial encoding and put these extensions in a biological perspective. The chapters approach is different from others in that it model questions to be answered as interventions and observations on the evolution trajectories of the pathway being modeled. ASP encoding enables easy filtering of Petri Net trajectories through observations. ASP syntax allows more general observations to be easily encoded as compared to encoding such observations directly in Petri Nets.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationLogical Modeling of Biological Systems
Number of pages37
ISBN (Electronic)9781119005223
ISBN (Print)9781848216808
StatePublished - Sep 9 2014


  • Answer set programming (ASP)
  • Biological pathways
  • Colored tokens
  • Firing semantics
  • Petri nets
  • Priority transitions
  • Simulation-based reasoning
  • Timed arcs

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Medicine(all)


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