DOI: 10.14704/nq.2018.16.3.1057

Relevance of quantum mechanics in bacterial communication

Sarangam Majumdar, Sisir Roy

Abstract


The recent findings confirm that bacteria communicate each other through chemical and electrical signals. Bacteria use chemical signaling molecules which are called as quorum sensing molecules(
QSMs) or autoinducers. Moreover, the ion channels in bacteria conduct a long-range electrical signaling within biofilm communities through propagated waves of potassium ions and biofilms attracts other bacterial species too. Both communication process are used by bacteria to make
their own survival strategies. In this article, we model this bacterial communication mechanism by complex Ginzburg- Landau equation and discuss the formation of patterns depending on kinematic viscosity associated with internal noise. Again, the potassium wave propagation is described by the non-linear Schrodinger equation in a dissipative environment. By adding perturbation to non-linear Schrodinger equation one arrives at Complex Ginzburg-Landau equation. In this paper we emphasize that at the cellular level(bacteria) we use Complex Ginzburg - Landau equation as a perturbed Non- linear Schrodinger equation to understand the bacterial communication as well as pattern formation in Biofilms for certain range of kinematic viscosity which can be tested in laboratory experiment. Here, the perturbation is due to the existence of non thermal fluctuations associated to the finite size of the bacteria. It sheds new light on the relevance of quantum formalism in understanding the cell to cell communication.

Keywords


Quorum Sensing; Biofilm; Ion Channel; Electrical signalling; Quantum biology

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