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Della Pietra Lecture Series: Bonnie Bassler
Start Date: 10/1/2015Start Time: 5:45 PM
End Date: 10/1/2015

Event Description:

Wine and Cheese Reception: 5:00 pm
Lecture: 5:45 pm
Title: How Bacteria Talk To Each Other

Abstract: Bacteria communicate with one another using small chemical molecules that they release into the environment. These molecules travel from cell to cell and the bacteria have receptors on their surfaces that allow them to detect and respond to the build up of the molecules. This process of cell-to-cell communication in bacteria is called “Quorum Sensing” and it allows bacteria to synchronize behavior on a population-wide scale. Bacterial behaviors controlled by quorum sensing are usually ones that are unproductive when undertaken by an individual bacterium acting alone but become effective when undertaken in unison by the group. For example, quorum sensing controls virulence, biofilm formation, and the exchange of DNA. Thus, quorum sensing is a mechanism that allows bacteria to function as multi-cellular organisms. Current biomedical research is focused on the development of novel anti-bacterial therapies aimed at interfering with quorum sensing. Such therapies could be used to control bacterial pathogenicity.

Dr. Bonnie Bassler is the Squibb Professor in Molecular Biology and Chair, Department of Molecular Biology at Princeton University. This year, Professor Bassler and Everett Peter Greenberg of the University of Washington were awarded the Shaw Prize in Life Science and Medicine for their discovery of quorum sensing, a process whereby bacteria communicate with each other. More »
Location Information:
West Campus - Simons Center for Geometry and Physics  (View Map)
Stony Brook University
Stony Brook, NY 11794
Phone: (631) 632-4459
Room: Auditorium
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