Thursday, November 13, 2008

Unicellular Predatory Tactics

Predatory bacterial swarm uses rippling motion to reach prey is a Biology Blog entry focused on a bacterium known as Myxococcus xanthus (M. xanthus); a fearsome predator among the world of unicellular organisms. A specific function is discussed namely, an ability of many M. xanthus to act in concert in generating parallel waves which move in the direction of bacteria they prey on. A paper discussing this phenomeon was published in the October 24th edition of PNAS.

Chemotaxis is an ability to control movement in response to an environmental stimulus. Amusingly the research team described M. xanthus behavior in response to prey as predataxis.

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