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Bacterial Swimming and Oxygen Transport Near Contact Lines

AuthorsTuval, Idan ; Cisneros, Luis; Dombrowski, Christopher; Wolgemuth, Charles W.; Kessler, John O.; Goldstein, Raymond E.
Bacillus subtilis
Issue Date6-Jan-2005
PublisherNational Academy of Sciences (U.S.)
CitationProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the USA (PNAS) 102(7): 2277-2282 (2005)
AbstractAerobic bacteria often live in thin fluid layers near solid-air-water contact lines, where the biology of chemotaxis, metabolism, and cell-cell signaling is intimately connected to the physics of buoyancy, diffusion, and mixing. Using the geometry of a sessile drop we demonstrate in suspensions of B. subtilis the self-organized generation of a persistent hydrodynamic vortex which traps cells near the contact line. Arising from upward oxygentaxis and downward gravitational forcing, these dynamics are related to the Boycott effect in sedimentation, and are explained quantitatively by a mathematical model consisting of oxygen diffusion and consumption, chemotaxis, and viscous fluid dynamics. The vortex is shown to advectively enhance uptake of oxygen into the suspension and the wedge geometry leads to a singularity in the chemotactic dynamics near the contact line.
Publisher version (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1073/pnas.0406724102
Appears in Collections:(IFISC) Artículos
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