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Environmental biophysics of microorganisms


Experiments carried out by Di Jin (formerly a PhD student in our group) have discovered that, when entrained to day/night cycles, the swimming parameters of the biflagellate microalga Chlamydomonas swims change with the alternation of day and night. In particular, the swimming speed grows at night to about double the value it has during the day.

This discovery will have consequences for the little known lifestyle of Chlamydomonas in the soil. If the diurnal variations we observed apply to water column algae, they will also impact diel migrations.

In addition our study means researchers have to be careful when and under what light conditions you carry out your motility experiments with Chlamydomonas, and possibly other microalgae.

Find out more in our paper published online today in the Biophysical Journal: