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Modelling, AnaLysis and knowledge Integration for food and biological ComplEx Systems

The research of the MALICES team is focused on in silico model design to represent the dynamic behaviour of complex food and biological systems for which the emergence of the global properties of these systems is the result of a combination of mechanisms that occur at different, smaller scales. The aim, for example, is to be able to control the global behaviour of a process (unit operation or chain of unit operations) while reducing its intrinsic uncertainty. How do kinetics at a microscopic scale induce different states at a macroscopic scale, and vice versa? The development of in silico models is a crucial step and one that is absolutely necessary to reach a good understanding of these complex systems as a whole, to capitalise on and to incorporate various analyses in an integrative vision, to make decisions and to address the strategic issues that INRA is faced with, such as sustainability.

The strength of the MALICES team is based on its pooled complementary skills in applied mathematics, computer science and process engineering, for a cross-fertilisation of methods and tools. MALICES develops integrated mathematical/computational approaches that are designed to deal with the bottlenecks specific to its domain, and that are customised for each subject under study.

Scientific objectives and research strategy

The main research questions of the MALICES team are: which representations, approaches, methods and tools should be used to model a complex food system?

  • Starting from a question about a food process, the MALICES team adopts a methodological approach based on:
  • Collecting and formalising all available knowledge;
  • Developing, adapting and coupling models;Integrating knowledge from various sources, including experimental data, to develop an integrated model;
  • Relying on robust optimisation (artificial evolution, genetic algorithms), visualisation and interaction for learning parameters and structures;
  • Considering uncertainty about knowledge and data.

Our activities in a few keywords

Model coupling, formalism coupling, human expertise, interactive learning, optimisation, visualisation, uncertainty.

Our research objective: development of concepts, methods and tools for modelling and analysing complex biological and food systems.

Our study models:

All subjects of relevance to the CEPIA Division and the UMR GMPA

Ongoing projects:


CAFE (FP7, 2008–2013): "Computer-Aided Food processes for control Engineering".

DREAM (FP7, 2008–2013): "Design and development of REAlistic food Models with well- characterised micro- and macro-structure and composition".


Carnot Qualiment Institute-MODENA Project (2012-2015): An integrated approach to the deconstruction of liquid and semi-liquid food model matrices.

PhD projects

Ongoing and defended PhDs of the MALICES team and the GMPA research unit are available on the corresponding web pages.

 doctorats en cours au sein de MALICES ainsi que les doctorats soutenus ces dernières années au GMPA sur les pages dédiées.


Members of the team can be contacted:

  • by phone: +33 (0)1 30 81 + extension (click on member name).
  • by e-mail:
Permanent members
Non-permanent members

Cédric Baudrit
Sébastien Gaucel
Évelyne Lutton
Nathalie Perrot (Scientific coordinator)
Alberto Tonda
Cristian Tréléa (Scientific coordinator)

Etienne Descamps
Thuy Minh Giang

Publications of the MALICES team

Publications of the MALICES team from 2008-2013, in peer-reviewed scientific journals and book chapters.
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