Two Dimensional Pattern Formation In a Chemotactic System

  • M. R. Myerscough
  • P. K. Maini
  • J. D. Murray
  • K. H. Winters
Part of the Mathematical Modelling book series (MMO, volume 6)


Chemotaxis is known to be important in ceil aggregation in a variety of contexts. We propose a simple partial differential equation model for a chemotactic system of two species, a population of cells and a chemo-attractant to which cells respond. Linear analysis shows that there exists the possibility of spatially inhomogeneous solutions to the model equations for suitable choices of parameters.

We solve the full nonlinear steady state equations numerically on a two dimensional rectangular domain. By using mode selection from the linear analysis we produce simple pattern elements such as stripes and regular spots. More complex patterns evolve from these simple solutions as parameter values or domain shape change continuously. An example bifurcation diagram is calculated using the chemotactic response of the cells as the bifurcation parameter. These numerical solutions suggest that a chemotactic mechanism can produce a rich variety of complex patterns.


Pattern Formation Bifurcation Diagram Bifurcation Parameter Motile Cell Homogeneous Steady State 


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Copyright information

© Birkhäuser Boston 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. R. Myerscough
  • P. K. Maini
  • J. D. Murray
  • K. H. Winters

There are no affiliations available

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