Berkeley Fluids Seminar

University of California, Berkeley

Bring your lunch and enjoy learning about fluids!

Monday, November 13, 2017

12:00-13:00, 3110 Etcheverry Hall

Professor Bin Liu (UC Merced)

Bacterial wobbling and rolling: interplays between bacterial morphologies and motility traits

Abstract: Bacteria come in consistent shapes and sizes, which serve as one way for individuals or their aggregate to interact with the living environment. Despite the fact that a specific morphology is important within a species, there is a lack of direct evidence on how cellular morphology affects bacterial fitness, especially regarding their dispersal capabilities and virulence factors. In this talk, I will discuss whether the motility traits can provide us an understanding of these specific cellular morphologies, for instance, the prevalent sizes and geometries of the rod-like bacteria. I will show that the apparent wobbling movements of the cell body can essentially benefit swimming motilities, which is potentially adapted to an aqueous environment. I will also discuss the dispersal capabilities of a bacterial rosette, known as an aggregate of sessile cells and prohibited from active dispersals. I will show that a surprising rolling trait can emerge from both its spherical geometry and the mechanical nature of its living environments, such as a solid-liquid interface.

Bio: Dr. Bin Liu is an Assistant Professor in Physics at University of California, Merced. Dr. Liu got his Ph. D. in Physics at New York University, studying both multi-fermion systems and collections of mobile boundaries in thermal convections. He continued his interests in fluids during his postdoctoral research on fluid-structure interactions in both biological locomotion and non-Newtonian flows at Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences and later on at Brown University in mechanical engineering, followed by his studies of origami-based mechanical metamaterials in the Department of Physics at Cornell University. Despite these wide interests of research, Dr. Liu’s current group focuses on the behaviors and transports of live microorganisms in complex mechanical environments at both solitary and collective levels.

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