Volume 66, Number 4, May 2004
|Page(s)||599 - 602|
|Section||Interdisciplinary physics and related areas of science and technology|
|Published online||01 May 2004|
Self-trapping of a single bacterium in its own chemoattractant
Physique de la Matière Condensèe, Collège de France - Paris, France
Accepted: 12 March 2004
Bacteria (e.g., E. coli) are very sensitive to certain chemoattractants (e.g., asparate) which they themselves produce. This leads to chemical instabilities in a uniform population. We discuss here the different case of a single bacterium, following the general scheme of Brenner, Levitov and Budrene. We show that in one and two dimensions (in a capillary or in a thin film) the bacterium can become self-trapped in its cloud of attractant. This should occur if a certain coupling constant g is larger than unity. We then estimate the reduced diffusion of the bacterium in the strong-coupling limit, and find .
PACS: 87.10.+e – General theory and mathematical aspects
© EDP Sciences, 2004
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