Regensburg 2019 – wissenschaftliches Programm

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BP: Fachverband Biologische Physik

BP 28: Statistical physics of biological systems II (joint session BP/DY)

BP 28.9: Vortrag

Donnerstag, 4. April 2019, 17:15–17:30, H11

Kleiber’s law scaling of the metabolic rate in planariansAlbert Thommen1,2, Steffen Werner2,3, Olga Frank1, Jenny Philipp4, Oskar Knittelfelder1, Yihui Quek2,5, Karim Fahmy4, Andrej Shevchenko1, •Benjamin M. Friedrich2,6, Frank Jülicher2, and Jochen C. Rink11MPI CBG, Dresden. Germany — 2MPI PKS, Dresden, Germany — 3AMOLF, Amsterdam, Netherlands — 4HZDR, Dresden, Germany — 5MIT, Cambridge, USA — 6cfaed, TU Dresden, Germany

Kleiber’s law states that the metabolic rate of animals scales with the 3/4 power of their body mass. It is considered one of the few quantitative laws in biology, yet its mechanistic basis remains unknown. Here, we take advantage of the reversible changes in body size by 2 orders of magnitude as function of food abundance in the planarian Schmidtea mediterranea. Using microcalometry, we show that Kleiber’s law applies to adult organisms of this flatworm species. Intriguingly, the metabolic rate per cell is independent of organism size. Instead, Kleiber’s law in planarians results from a size-dependent increase in mass per cell, reflecting a higher proportion of energy stores in large animals. Using a minimal energy balance model, we relate energy currents to growth and degrowth rates, in quantitative agreement with experiment. Our study is a first step to link energy fluxes, metabolism, and pattern formation in living matter.

[1] Thommen et al. BioRxiv; doi: https://doi.org/10.1101/332916 (accepted in eLife)

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