Math Bio Seminar Series-Daniel Chen (Brandeis University)-Energetic Efficiency of Swimming Sperm

Mathematics - Lecture/Discussion

Tuesday, December 3, 2013
4:00 PM-5:00 PM

Stratton Hall

Abstract: The axoneme at the core of the eukaryotic flagellum is comprised of thousands of dynein motors coupled in a universal '9+2' architecture of doublet microtubules. A longstanding question is the mechanism of how such precise periodic beating emerges from the mechanics of such a structure. One key parameter that all putative models of axonemal beating must reckon with is the rate of ATP consumption, i.e. the energetic efficiency of the axoneme. To this end, I have developed a platform, based on confinement of reactivated sea urchin sperm in emulsion droplets, to measure the ATP consumption rate of swimming at the single-cell level. I will present our results on ATP consumption and its dependence on fluid viscosity which reveal surprising implications for the molecular mechanisms of axonemal beating.

Suggested Audiences: Adult, College


Last Modified: November 21, 2013 at 9:49 AM