Chemotaxis of <i>Escherichia coli</i> to <i>L</i> -serine

  • Vuppula R
  • Tirumkudulu M
  • Venkatesh K
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A novel experimental technique was used to quantify the motion of E. coli to varying serine concentrations and gradients so as to capture the spatial and temporal variation of the chemotactic response. The average run speed and the cell diffusivity are found to be dependent on the serine concentration. The measured diffusivities were in the range of 1.2-2.5 x 10 (-10) m(2) s(-1). The study revealed that the rotational diffusivity of the cells, induced by the extracellular environment, also varies with the serine concentration. The drift velocity increased with serine gradients reaching a maximum value of approximately 5.5 microm s(-1) at 1.6 microM microm(-1) after which it decreased. Experimental analysis demonstrated the interdependence of run speed, rotational diffusivity and drift velocity that characterizes the motion. Further, the motion was found to critically depend on the oxygen concentration and energy level of the cells.

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  • Rajitha R Vuppula

  • Mahesh S Tirumkudulu

  • K V Venkatesh

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