I have told you some things about a free-living organism only one micron in size. It is equipped with sensors that count molecules of interest in its environment, coupled to a readout device that computes whether these counts are going up or down. The output is an intracellular signal that modulates the direction of rotation of a set of rotary engines, each turning a propeller with variable pitch. Each engine (or motor) is driven, in turn, by several forcegenerating elements (like pistons), powered by a transmembrane ion flux. In addition to a gear shift (labeled forward and reverse but prone to shift on its own) there is a stator, a rotor, a drive shaft, a bushing, and a universal joint.
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© 2004 Springer-Verlag New York, Inc.
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(2004). Epilogue. In: Berg, H.C. (eds) E. coli in Motion. Biological and Medical Physics, Biomedical Engineering. Springer, New York, NY. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-0-387-21638-6_13
Publisher Name: Springer, New York, NY
Print ISBN: 978-0-387-00888-2
Online ISBN: 978-0-387-21638-6
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