Archive for May 10th, 2013

May 10, 2013

Quorum Sensing

quorum sensing

Quorum [kwawr-uhmsensing is a chemical messaging system employed by bacteria to determine the presence of other bacteria. It is part of a system of stimulus and response correlated to population density (e.g. some bioluminescent bacteria will not produce light unless in sufficient concentration).

Many species of bacteria use quorum sensing to coordinate gene expression according to the density of their local population. In similar fashion, some social insects use a form of quorum sensing to determine where to nest. In addition to its function in biological systems, quorum sensing has several useful applications for computing and robotics.

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