Encyclopedia of Systems Biology

2013 Edition
| Editors: Werner Dubitzky, Olaf Wolkenhauer, Kwang-Hyun Cho, Hiroki Yokota


Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-9863-7_1468


An observable is an experimentally accessible quantity like the concentration of a compound. The observable o is characterized by an observational function go(x) which relates the quantity of interest, e.g., a concentration x, with the measured quantity, e.g., the intensity y = go(x) + noise. One part of the observational function is the calibration curve which is a characteristic of the measurement device. Moreover, the observational function determines the chosen quantity of interest, e.g., which compound is evaluated, as well as the noise distribution (Kreutz and Timmer 2009).



  1. Kreutz C, Timmer J (2009) Systems biology: experimental design. FEBS J 276:923–942PubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute for Physics, Freiburger Center for Data Analysis and Modeling (FDM)University of FreiburgFreiburgGermany
  2. 2.Institute for PhysicsUniversity of FreiburgFreiburgGermany
  3. 3.BIOSS Centre for Biological Signalling Studies and Freiburg Institute for Advanced Studies (FRIAS)FreiburgGermany
  4. 4.Department of Clinical and Experimental MedicineLinköping UniversityLinköpingSweden