Chaotic Model for Lévy Walks in Swarming Bacteria

Gil Ariel, Avraham Be'Er, Andy Reynolds

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

32 Scopus citations

Abstract

We describe a new mechanism for Lévy walks, explaining the recently observed superdiffusion of swarming bacteria. The model hinges on several key physical properties of bacteria, such as an elongated cell shape, self-propulsion, and a collectively generated regular vortexlike flow. In particular, chaos and Lévy walking are a consequence of group dynamics. The model explains how cells can fine-tune the geometric properties of their trajectories. Experiments confirm the spectrum of these patterns in fluorescently labeled swarming Bacillus subtilis.

Original languageEnglish
Article number228102
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Volume118
Issue number22
DOIs
StatePublished - 2 Jun 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Physics and Astronomy

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