A Method for Measuring Bacterial Chemotaxis Parameters in a Microcapillary

A Method for Measuring Bacterial Chemotaxis Parameters in a Microcapillary

A Method for Measuring Bacterial Chemotaxis Parameters in a Microcapillary

Abstract

A new method was developed which enables chemotaxis parameters to be measured at a single-cell level inside a capillary for the first time. Thechemotaxis chamber consists of two reservoirs communicating through a capillary tube 50 mum in diameter. Chemotaxis parameters are measured inside the capillary using image analysis, after a nearly linear attractant concentration gradient has been generated along the capillary by diffusion. Compared to previously published techniques, this method provides a well-characterized chemoattractant concentration profile in addition to allowing single-cell parameters to be measured inside a fine capillary. This procedure was used to measure the single-cell chemotaxis parameters for Escherichia coli K12, and the results are compared to published data on single E. coli cells chemotaxing in bulk.

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