Multiscale modeling of bacterial chemotaxis: from molecules to behaviors. - Yuhai Tu, IBM T. J. Watson Research Center

Event Date: 

Friday, January 17, 2014 - 3:00pm to 4:00pm

Event Location: 

  • 4607B South Hall

Chemotaxis is a universal behavior for motile cells, wherein cells sense their environment and navigate towards favorable conditions. Bacterial chemotaxis behaviors have been studied for over a century by using some ingenious classical behavior assays, biochemistry, and genetics. Despite the success of these qualitative experiments, more quantitative and controlled methods are needed to understand the underlying molecular mechanism for the cellular behaviors. In this talk, I will discuss some of our recent work on combining quantitative experiments and mathematical modeling approaches to understand the intracellular signaling dynamics (see [1] for a recent review) and chemotaxis behaviors, such as log-sensing [2] and frequency-dependent responses [3]. Guided by quantitative experiments (at the molecular and cellular levels), we have developed a mutliscale model [4, 5] that can be used to explain and predict bacterial chemotaxis behaviors in any environment based on the underlying molecular signaling dynamics.