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Nature's Batik: A Computer Evolution Model of Diatom Valve Morphogenesis

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Abstract:

This paper describes a novel computer simulation that uses evolution to design functioning raphid pennate diatom valves. The model of valve morphogenesis used is based on current theories that highlight the importance of cytoskeletal elements in valve development. An "organic" negative imprint is grown in a grid-based system, using both local and global rules to dictate grid cell states. Silica then diffuses out into all remaining grid cells. This model is shown to generate raphid pennate diatom valves capable of functioning as cell walls. At every stage of development the generated valves are consistent with observations of real diatom valve growth. This model of diatom valve morphogenesis is interestingly similar to the negative technique used by artists in batik painting.

Keywords: COMPUTER SIMULATION; GENETIC ALGORITHM; MORPHOGENESIS; RAPHID DIATOM

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1166/jnn.2005.004

Publication date: January 1, 2005

More about this publication?
  • Journal for Nanoscience and Nanotechnology (JNN) is an international and multidisciplinary peer-reviewed journal with a wide-ranging coverage, consolidating research activities in all areas of nanoscience and nanotechnology into a single and unique reference source. JNN is the first cross-disciplinary journal to publish original full research articles, rapid communications of important new scientific and technological findings, timely state-of-the-art reviews with author's photo and short biography, and current research news encompassing the fundamental and applied research in all disciplines of science, engineering and medicine.
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