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Issue 44, 2017
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A model of cell-wall dynamics during sporulation in Bacillus subtilis

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Abstract

To survive starvation, Bacillus subtilis forms durable spores. After asymmetric cell division, the septum grows around the forespore in a process called engulfment, but the mechanism of force generation is unknown. Here, we derived a novel biophysical model for the dynamics of cell-wall remodeling during engulfment based on a balancing of dissipative, active, and mechanical forces. By plotting phase diagrams, we predict that sporulation is promoted by a line tension from the attachment of the septum to the outer cell wall, as well as by an imbalance in turgor pressures in the mother-cell and forespore compartments. We also predict that significant mother-cell growth hinders engulfment. Hence, relatively simple physical principles may guide this complex biological process.

Graphical abstract: A model of cell-wall dynamics during sporulation in Bacillus subtilis

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Publication details

The article was received on 25 Apr 2017, accepted on 12 Oct 2017 and first published on 13 Oct 2017


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C7SM00818J
Citation: Soft Matter, 2017,13, 8089-8095
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    A model of cell-wall dynamics during sporulation in Bacillus subtilis

    L. Yap and R. G. Endres, Soft Matter, 2017, 13, 8089
    DOI: 10.1039/C7SM00818J

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