Aggregation Patterns in Stressed Bacteria

Lev Tsimring, Herbert Levine, Igor Aranson, Eshel Ben-Jacob, Inon Cohen, Ofer Shochet, William N. Reynolds
1995 Physical Review Letters  
We study the formation of spot patterns seen in a variety of bacterial species when the bacteria are subjected to oxidative stress due to hazardous byproducts of respiration. Our approach consists of coupling the cell density field to a chemoattractant concentration as well as to nutrient and waste fields. The latter serves as a triggering field for emission of chemoattractant. Important elements in the proposed model include the propagation of a front of motile bacteria radially outward form
more » ... initial site, a Turing instability of the uniformly dense state and a reduction of motility for cells sufficiently far behind the front. The wide variety of patterns seen in the experiments is explained as being due the variation of the details of the initiation of the chemoattractant emission as well as the transition to a non-motile phase.
doi:10.1103/physrevlett.75.1859 pmid:10060409 fatcat:trq2okot65gojeqmt3c7iz6xru