Research area

Ecology on a chip

Integrative biology has emerged as a reaction against the reductionist approach that has dominated the last age of biology. As biologists have the objective of understanding the cells and their environment, either microbiome or tissue, the inclusion of ecological and evolutive principles in the analysis has been crucial.

Even the synthetic approach, built to understand it, has started to consider the potential of the landscape ecological interactions to design biological systems. This “spatial biology” emerging field, whose objective is to comprehend the adjacency relation role in the cellular communities framing, is becoming a central framework to unify biological systems that would be different the other way.

In this new line of investigation of the Millennial Nucleus, we will be studying the behavioral inertia role and the framing of panibacillus groupings. We will incorporate this inertia in the alignment of particles models. Our approach will be to attach the behavioral inertia and the intensity of the attachment in a demographic model that introduces the habitat quality dynamic. In parallel, we will perform experiments to understand the collective motion in a complex habitat landscape. For this, we will dynamically design heterogeneous ecological landscapes on an agar surface.

This system will allow us to observe the ecological dynamics with the precision of experimental physics and to test mathematical ecology various ideas. The objective is to know the dynamics of colonization of the spaces and use the power of experimental biology to make progress in the theories of spatial and landscape biology.

Researcher responsible:
Juan Keymer