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Author: yscao

[Challenge Topic] Design microbial systems to perform social behaviors

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Posted at 2012-5-16 02:46:51 | All floors
I think microorganisms does not neccessarily need to "perform" social behaviors, they have this property inbuilt onto their genes. I studied on T. cruzi, a human parasite, which uses extracellular microRNA to communicate between cells and invade host. I think the question should be either1) understand the social system of the microorganism,or (2) genetically modify the microorganism to "perform" a certain behavior other than itself, and consequently study the impact of this behavior to the microorganism's social system.

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Posted at 2012-5-16 17:47:26 | All floors

    If we are going to play an directed evolution in order to understand the origin of social behavior, then what we can manipulate is not only the signaling network within the cell, but also how environment selects. I'm wondering that the "good years in most of the time and occasionally big disasters" might be a realistic cases that select for cooperative groups: most of the time, the environment is nice without many pressures, so lots of random mutations can co-exist in the population, including the one leads to cooperative behavior; big disaster that kills 99% of the population occurs occasionally, which strongly prefer the survival of the most cooperative group.
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Posted at 2012-5-19 18:23:56 | All floors
Edited by zhiyuanli at 2012-5-20 12:57

Ya, many things here are already been realized by nature itself
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Posted at 2012-5-23 10:26:41 | All floors
maybe everything
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