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We use fluorescence correlation spectroscopy and fluorescence recovery after photobleaching to study vesicle dynamics inside the synapses of cultured hippocampal neurons labeled with the fluorescent vesicle marker FM 1-43. These studies show that when the cell is electrically at rest, only a small population of vesicles is mobile, taking seconds to traverse(More)
It has been theoretically suggested that when a bacterium swims in a fluid, the disturbance it creates is long-ranged and can influence its locomotion. The contribution of these long-range hydrodynamic interactions to swimming cells is examined herein for a number of bacterial strains with well-defined flagellar geometries. We show experimentally for the(More)
We investigate swimming and chemotactic behaviors of the polarly flagellated marine bacteria Vibrio alginolyticus in an aqueous medium. Our observations show that V. alginolyticus execute a cyclic, three-step (forward, reverse, and flick) swimming pattern that is distinctively different from the run-tumble pattern adopted by Escherichia coli. Specifically,(More)
Two models were recently proposed to enable us to understand the dynamics of synaptic vesicles in hippocampal neurons. In the caged diffusion model, the vesicles diffuse in small circular cages located randomly in the bouton, while in the stick-and-diffuse model the vesicles bind and release from a cellular cytomatrix. In this article, we obtain analytic(More)
It has long been suspected that population heterogeneity, either at a genetic level or at a protein level, can improve the fitness of an organism under a variety of environmental stresses. However, quantitative measurements to substantiate such a hypothesis turn out to be rather difficult and have rarely been performed. Herein, we examine the effect of(More)
We use measurements of swimming bacteria in an optical trap to determine fundamental properties of bacterial propulsion. In particular, we directly measure the force required to hold the bacterium in the optical trap and determine the propulsion matrix, which relates the translational and angular velocity of the flagellum to the torques and forces(More)
An optical trapping technique is implemented to investigate the chemotactic behavior of a marine bacterial strain Vibrio alginolyticus. The technique takes the advantage that the bacterium has only a single polar flagellum, which can rotate either in the counter-clock-wise or clock-wise direction. The two rotation states of the motor can be readily and(More)
Stochastic gene expression in bacteria can create a diverse protein distribution. Most of the current studies have focused on fluctuations around the mean, which constitutes the majority of a bacterial population. However, when the bacterial population is subject to a severe selection pressure, it is the properties of the minority cells that determine the(More)
We investigate a new form of collective dynamics displayed by Thiovulum majus, one of the fastest-swimming bacteria known. Cells spontaneously organize on a surface into a visually striking two-dimensional hexagonal lattice of rotating cells. As each constituent cell rotates its flagella, it creates a tornadolike flow that pulls neighboring cells towards(More)