Mechanical and Civil Engineering Seminar

Thursday October 19, 2017 11:00 AM

"Dynamics, Feedback, and Transient Antibiotic Resistance in Single Cells"

Speaker: Mary Dunlop, Biomedical Engineering Department, Boston University
Location: Gates-Thomas 135

Cells live in uncertain, dynamic environments and have many mechanisms for sensing and responding to changes in their surroundings. However, sudden fluctuations in the environment can be catastrophic if a population relies solely on sensory responses, which have a delay associated with them. Cells can reconcile this by using a stochastic approach, creating phenotypic diversity within an isogenic population to hedge against environmental uncertainty. Using a combination of time-lapse microscopy experiments and stochastic modeling I will show that cells can use feedback to generate dynamics and noise in expression of a key regulatory protein, providing transient antibiotic resistance at the single-cell level. Further, I will discuss how noise in an upstream regulator can propagate to downstream genes to orchestrate a coordinated response to environmental stresses.

Series Mechanical and Civil Engineering Seminar

Contact: Sonya Lincoln at 626-395-3385 lincolns@caltech.edu