Chemotaxis of the individual bacterium

Thierry Emonet
Molecular, Cellular and Developmental Biology, Yale University

(November 22, 2010 2:30 PM - 3:30 PM)

Chemotaxis of the individual bacterium

Abstract

At the cellular level, the detection, amplification, and processing of external chemical signals is affected by random fluctuations that arise within signaling pathways. In the case of the bacterial chemotaxis system we now have enough experimental data to go beyond ensemble averages. I will talk about our recent experimental and theoretical efforts to examine how the network design and spatial arrangement of this model signaling pathway shape the information processing and chemotactic capabilities of the single cell. An interesting result that emerges from this individual cell perspective is a molecular understanding of how cells resolve the compromise between the essential but likely competing behavioral modes of sensing and exploring.