University of Cambridge > > DAMTP BioLunch > Mechanics and Fluid Dynamics of Shape-shifting Multicellular Choanoflagellates

Mechanics and Fluid Dynamics of Shape-shifting Multicellular Choanoflagellates

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Colony-forming choanoflagellates have raised several fundamental questions in the evolution of multicellularity and biological fluid dynamics. In particular, the recent discovery of the multicellular choanoflagellate species Choanoeca flexa has gathered considerable interest. They form colonies in the shape of a curved sheet, connected only at the tip of their collar pseudopodia. Furthermore, the colony can rapidly change its curvature and inter-convert between two opposite orientations in response to changing environmental cues. This talk dives into the mechanics of the inversion and the implication of such inversion in their filter-feeding rate and motility. From these results, we reflect on the evolutionary advantages of forming a colony.

This talk is part of the DAMTP BioLunch series.

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