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Social interactions in myxobacterial swarming.

Wu Y, Jiang Y, Kaiser D, Alber M - PLoS Comput. Biol. (2007)

Bottom Line: Also, the model is able to quantify the contributions of S motility and A motility to swarming.Some pathogenic bacteria spread over infected tissue by swarming.The model described here may shed some light on their colonization process.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Physics, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, Indiana, United States of America.

ABSTRACT
Swarming, a collective motion of many thousands of cells, produces colonies that rapidly spread over surfaces. In this paper, we introduce a cell-based model to study how interactions between neighboring cells facilitate swarming. We chose to study Myxococcus xanthus, a species of myxobacteria, because it swarms rapidly and has well-defined cell-cell interactions mediated by type IV pili and by slime trails. The aim of this paper is to test whether the cell contact interactions, which are inherent in pili-based S motility and slime-based A motility, are sufficient to explain the observed expansion of wild-type swarms. The simulations yield a constant rate of swarm expansion, which has been observed experimentally. Also, the model is able to quantify the contributions of S motility and A motility to swarming. Some pathogenic bacteria spread over infected tissue by swarming. The model described here may shed some light on their colonization process.

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The Cell Body of a Bent Cell Is Represented by Three Nodes (Solid Black Dots)The cell has a length-to-width ratio of 10:1.
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pcbi-0030253-g003: The Cell Body of a Bent Cell Is Represented by Three Nodes (Solid Black Dots)The cell has a length-to-width ratio of 10:1.

Mentions: In this paper, we focus on the collective motion of a large number of cells in a swarm of high cell density, taking only the local, contact-mediated interactions between cells into account. We represent each cell as a string of N nodes in a 2-D space, following our earlier work [20] (Figure 3). The vector pointing in the direction from the tail node to the head node represents the orientation of a cell. We define an energy function (Hamiltonian) for the node configuration of a cell body and use it to constrain the cell length and the cell shape to a certain range. The active motion of an individual cell is then modeled as follows. After the head moves in a particular direction, a Monte Carlo approach [21] is used to reconfigure positions of other nodes in an attempt to minimize the Hamiltonian (see Methods). This allows the cell body to bend and to change its length by random fluctuations, which reflects the experimental observations [22].


Social interactions in myxobacterial swarming.

Wu Y, Jiang Y, Kaiser D, Alber M - PLoS Comput. Biol. (2007)

The Cell Body of a Bent Cell Is Represented by Three Nodes (Solid Black Dots)The cell has a length-to-width ratio of 10:1.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC2230681&req=5

pcbi-0030253-g003: The Cell Body of a Bent Cell Is Represented by Three Nodes (Solid Black Dots)The cell has a length-to-width ratio of 10:1.
Mentions: In this paper, we focus on the collective motion of a large number of cells in a swarm of high cell density, taking only the local, contact-mediated interactions between cells into account. We represent each cell as a string of N nodes in a 2-D space, following our earlier work [20] (Figure 3). The vector pointing in the direction from the tail node to the head node represents the orientation of a cell. We define an energy function (Hamiltonian) for the node configuration of a cell body and use it to constrain the cell length and the cell shape to a certain range. The active motion of an individual cell is then modeled as follows. After the head moves in a particular direction, a Monte Carlo approach [21] is used to reconfigure positions of other nodes in an attempt to minimize the Hamiltonian (see Methods). This allows the cell body to bend and to change its length by random fluctuations, which reflects the experimental observations [22].

Bottom Line: Also, the model is able to quantify the contributions of S motility and A motility to swarming.Some pathogenic bacteria spread over infected tissue by swarming.The model described here may shed some light on their colonization process.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Physics, University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame, Indiana, United States of America.

ABSTRACT
Swarming, a collective motion of many thousands of cells, produces colonies that rapidly spread over surfaces. In this paper, we introduce a cell-based model to study how interactions between neighboring cells facilitate swarming. We chose to study Myxococcus xanthus, a species of myxobacteria, because it swarms rapidly and has well-defined cell-cell interactions mediated by type IV pili and by slime trails. The aim of this paper is to test whether the cell contact interactions, which are inherent in pili-based S motility and slime-based A motility, are sufficient to explain the observed expansion of wild-type swarms. The simulations yield a constant rate of swarm expansion, which has been observed experimentally. Also, the model is able to quantify the contributions of S motility and A motility to swarming. Some pathogenic bacteria spread over infected tissue by swarming. The model described here may shed some light on their colonization process.

Show MeSH