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Experimentally guided computational model discovers important elements for social behavior in myxobacteria.

Hendrata M, Yang Z, Lux R, Shi W - PLoS ONE (2011)

Bottom Line: The simulation is able to produce both gliding pattern and spontaneous aggregation center formation as observed in experiments.The model is tested against several known M. xanthus mutants and our modification of parameter values relevant for the individual mutants produces good phenotypic agreements.This outcome indicates the strong predictive potential of our model for the social behaviors of uncharacterized mutants and their expected phenotypes during development.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Mathematics, California State University Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California, United States of America. mhendra@calstatela.edu

ABSTRACT
Identifying essential factors in cellular interactions and organized movement of cells is important in predicting behavioral phenotypes exhibited by many bacterial cells. We chose to study Myxococcus xanthus, a soil bacterium whose individual cell behavior changes while in groups, leading to spontaneous formation of aggregation center during the early stage of fruiting body development. In this paper, we develop a cell-based computational model that solely relies on experimentally determined parameters to investigate minimal elements required to produce the observed social behaviors in M. xanthus. The model verifies previously known essential parameters and identifies one novel parameter, the active turning, which we define as the ability and tendency of a cell to turn to a certain angle without the presence of any obvious external factors. The simulation is able to produce both gliding pattern and spontaneous aggregation center formation as observed in experiments. The model is tested against several known M. xanthus mutants and our modification of parameter values relevant for the individual mutants produces good phenotypic agreements. This outcome indicates the strong predictive potential of our model for the social behaviors of uncharacterized mutants and their expected phenotypes during development.

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Simulation and experimental images of M. xanthus genetic mutants at the end of 12 hours during development.Panels A, C and E show simulation images with periodic boundary conditions for SW504 (no EPS), SW601 (elevated reversal frequency) and SW600 (reduced reversal frequency) mutants, respectively. All three simulations use periodic boundary conditions and run for 2160 time steps. Panels B, D and F show their corresponding experimental images. In these images, cells are shown in dark grey and EPS in white. At locations with high EPS concentration, bright white color overrides black in the view of microscope.
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pone-0022169-g005: Simulation and experimental images of M. xanthus genetic mutants at the end of 12 hours during development.Panels A, C and E show simulation images with periodic boundary conditions for SW504 (no EPS), SW601 (elevated reversal frequency) and SW600 (reduced reversal frequency) mutants, respectively. All three simulations use periodic boundary conditions and run for 2160 time steps. Panels B, D and F show their corresponding experimental images. In these images, cells are shown in dark grey and EPS in white. At locations with high EPS concentration, bright white color overrides black in the view of microscope.

Mentions: Using the five experimentally determined parameters, our computational model accurately simulates the early aggregation center formation during M. xanthus development. To further test this model, we simulate 5000 cells of several known genetic mutants during the first 12 hours of development, and test whether the simulation produces phenotypes similar to those observed experimentally (Fig. 5).


Experimentally guided computational model discovers important elements for social behavior in myxobacteria.

Hendrata M, Yang Z, Lux R, Shi W - PLoS ONE (2011)

Simulation and experimental images of M. xanthus genetic mutants at the end of 12 hours during development.Panels A, C and E show simulation images with periodic boundary conditions for SW504 (no EPS), SW601 (elevated reversal frequency) and SW600 (reduced reversal frequency) mutants, respectively. All three simulations use periodic boundary conditions and run for 2160 time steps. Panels B, D and F show their corresponding experimental images. In these images, cells are shown in dark grey and EPS in white. At locations with high EPS concentration, bright white color overrides black in the view of microscope.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3139613&req=5

pone-0022169-g005: Simulation and experimental images of M. xanthus genetic mutants at the end of 12 hours during development.Panels A, C and E show simulation images with periodic boundary conditions for SW504 (no EPS), SW601 (elevated reversal frequency) and SW600 (reduced reversal frequency) mutants, respectively. All three simulations use periodic boundary conditions and run for 2160 time steps. Panels B, D and F show their corresponding experimental images. In these images, cells are shown in dark grey and EPS in white. At locations with high EPS concentration, bright white color overrides black in the view of microscope.
Mentions: Using the five experimentally determined parameters, our computational model accurately simulates the early aggregation center formation during M. xanthus development. To further test this model, we simulate 5000 cells of several known genetic mutants during the first 12 hours of development, and test whether the simulation produces phenotypes similar to those observed experimentally (Fig. 5).

Bottom Line: The simulation is able to produce both gliding pattern and spontaneous aggregation center formation as observed in experiments.The model is tested against several known M. xanthus mutants and our modification of parameter values relevant for the individual mutants produces good phenotypic agreements.This outcome indicates the strong predictive potential of our model for the social behaviors of uncharacterized mutants and their expected phenotypes during development.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Mathematics, California State University Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California, United States of America. mhendra@calstatela.edu

ABSTRACT
Identifying essential factors in cellular interactions and organized movement of cells is important in predicting behavioral phenotypes exhibited by many bacterial cells. We chose to study Myxococcus xanthus, a soil bacterium whose individual cell behavior changes while in groups, leading to spontaneous formation of aggregation center during the early stage of fruiting body development. In this paper, we develop a cell-based computational model that solely relies on experimentally determined parameters to investigate minimal elements required to produce the observed social behaviors in M. xanthus. The model verifies previously known essential parameters and identifies one novel parameter, the active turning, which we define as the ability and tendency of a cell to turn to a certain angle without the presence of any obvious external factors. The simulation is able to produce both gliding pattern and spontaneous aggregation center formation as observed in experiments. The model is tested against several known M. xanthus mutants and our modification of parameter values relevant for the individual mutants produces good phenotypic agreements. This outcome indicates the strong predictive potential of our model for the social behaviors of uncharacterized mutants and their expected phenotypes during development.

Show MeSH