Chemosensing in Escherichia coli: Two regimes of two-state receptors

Juan E. Keymer, Robert G. Endres, Monica Skoge, Yigal Meir, Ned S. Wingreen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

169 Scopus citations


The chemotaxis network in Escherichia coli is remarkable for its sensitivity to small relative changes in the concentrations of multiple chemical signals. We present a model for signal integration by mixed clusters of interacting two-state chemoreceptors. Our model results compare favorably to the results obtained by Sourjik and Berg with in vivo fluorescence resonance energy transfer. Importantly, we identify two distinct regimes of behavior, depending on the relative energies of the two states of the receptors. In regime I, coupling of receptors leads to high sensitivity, while in regime II, coupling of receptors leads to high cooperatively, i.e., high Hill coefficient. For homogeneous receptors, we predict an observable transition between regime I and regime II with increasing receptor methylation or amidation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1786-1791
Number of pages6
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number6
StatePublished - 15 Feb 2006


  • Chemotaxis
  • Monod, Wyman, and Changeux model
  • Receptor clustering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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