Forma, Vol. 16 (No. 4), pp. 307-326, 2001

Population Morphogenesis by Cooperative Bacteria

Tohey Matsuyama1 and Mitsugu Matsushita2

1Division of Bacteriology, Department of Infectious Disease Control and International Medicine, Niigata University Graduate School of Medical and Dental Sciences, Niigata 951-8510, Japan
2Department of Physics, Chuo University, Kasuga, Bunkyo-ku, Tokyo 112-8551, Japan

(Received July 4, 2001; Accepted November 13, 2001)

Keywords: Bacteria, Colony Patterns, Population Morphogenesis, Collective Behavior

Abstract. In nature, most bacteria are living as population. Such bacteria are able to generate various colony patterns under experimental conditions. Studies on generation mechanisms of these population patterns highlighted unique dynamics which work dominantly in the microbial world. Spatiotemporal analyses on familiar patterns (dense-branching-morphology-like or concentric ring-like) by Bacillus subtilis and Proteus mirabilis revealed interactive and collaborative behavior of bacteria in the structured population. Bacteria seem to know well merits of being as organized population.

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