Mechanical interactions between bacterial species with different motility characteristics play an important role in spatial-temporal dynamics of multi-species bacterial colonies and can lead to formation of complex patterns.
Theoretical analysis and in vitro reconstitution of a biological reaction-diffusion system identify key functional motifs as well as underlying principles and enable rebuilding pattern formation in a modular fashion.
Plexin controls the spatial distribution of synapses by locally inhibiting Rap2 small GTPase activity along the axon, and a Rap2 effector, TNIK, which also plays a key role in inhibiting synapse number.
Simulations and experiments on systems containing two different populations of microorganisms show that interactions that benefit at least one of the populations can lead to communities with stable compositions, and that strong cooperation between two populations can lead to communities in which both populations are mixed together.
The geometry selection rules of dynamic Min protein patterns are determined in fully confined fluidic chambers, showing that both oscillations and running waves are derivatives of spiral rotations that are established as the majority pattern.
Realistic reaction-diffusion signaling networks that include cell-autonomous factors can robustly form self-organizing spatial patterns for any combination of diffusion coefficients without requiring differential diffusivity.