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Solution of the Michaelis-Menten equation using the decomposition method

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  • We present a low-order recursive solution to the Michaelis-Menten equation using the decomposition method. This solution is algebraic in nature and provides a simpler alternative to numerical approaches such as differential equation evaluation and root-solving techniques that are currently used to compute substrate concentration in the Michaelis-Menten equation. A detailed characterization of the errors in substrate concentrations computed from decomposition, Runge-Kutta, and bisection methods over a wide range of $s_{0} $:$K_{m}$ values was made by comparing them with highly accurate solutions obtained using the Lambert $W$ function. Our results indicated that solutions obtained from the decomposition method were usually more accurate than those from the corresponding classical Runge-Kutta methods. Moreover, these solutions required significantly fewer computations than the root-solving method. Specifically, when the stepsize was 0.1% of the total time interval, the computed substrate concentrations using the decomposition method were characterized by accuracies on the order of 10$^-8$ or better. The algebraic nature of the decomposition solution and its relatively high accuracy make this approach an attractive candidate for computing substrate concentration in the Michaelis-Menten equation.
    Mathematics Subject Classification: Primary: 34A05, 34A55; Secondary: 92C45.


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