University of Wisconsin-Madison
Election Year: 1978
Primary Section: 21, Biochemistry
Secondary Section: 24, Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience
Membership Type: Member
My research interest is the behavior of mircoorganisms, especially bacteria, with a view toward extending new facts and concepts to the behavior of higher organisms, including mammals, and to neurobiology, including the sense of taste and the sense of smell. Bacteria do not just swim about randomly. They are attracted by certain chemicals and repelled by others; they show positive and negative chemotaxis. The major objective of my research is to understand in molecular terms the mechanism of bacterial chemotaxis. How do bacteria sense the chemicals that attract or repel them? How are the flagella told what to do? How do the flagella work, and how are they coordinated? How do bacteria adapt (cease to respond) to the continued presence of a chemical stimulus? The tools of biochemistry and genetics have been applied to the search for answers to these questions.