Microbial mechanics: The growth and form of filamentary microorganisms

Michael Tabor

in New Trends in the Physics and Mechanics of Biological Systems

Published in print May 2011 | ISBN: 9780199605835
Published online September 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191729522 | DOI:

Series: Lecture Notes of the Les Houches Summer School

Microbial mechanics: The growth and form of filamentary microorganisms

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This chapter reviews the basic principles of hyphal growth in filamentary bacteria and fungi. While geometric models can provide a simple route to finding idealized hyphal tip shapes, biomechanical models provide a realistic continuum description that can include information about the cell wall structure and the growth process itself. The use of the nonlinear elastic theory of shells combined with biomechanical growth mechanisms produce realistic hyphal shapes and reveal a self-similar pattern of tip propagation as well as a possible explanation of the so called normal growth hypothesis.

Keywords: hyphal growth; geometric models; biomechanics; nonlinear elasticity; tip growth

Chapter.  10260 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Physics

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