Arthur Prindle

Assistant Professor, Northwestern University

Arthur received a BS in Chemical Engineering from Caltech and a PhD in Bioengineering from UCSD. As a Simons-Helen Hay Whitney Fellow in the Süel Laboratory at UCSD, he developed new approaches to decipher collective mechanisms underlying bacterial biofilm organization. In particular, how a conflict between cooperation and competition is resolved through collective metabolic oscillations that increase nutrient availability for sheltered interior cells. Arthur found that these oscillations are coordinated by ion channel-mediated electrochemical signals, revealing an unexpected functional similarity between ion channels in neurons and those in microbes. These findings serve to establish a prokaryotic paradigm for electrical signaling and hint at the extent to which unicellular bacteria are capable of behaving as a proto-multicellular organism. Arthur’s laboratory is currently working to leverage these exciting findings to develop a new synthetic biology toolbox based on ion channel-mediated electrochemical communication in bacterial communities. Arthur is currently an Assistant Professor at Northwestern University in the Center for Synthetic Biology and holds a CASI award from the Burroughs Wellcome Fund, a Young Investigator award from the Army Research Office, and a Packard Fellowship.

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