Gerald Wong (UCLA)

Gerald Wong (UCLA)

Butler Seminar Series

Event Date/Location

November 16, 2016 - 12:00 pm
Thomas Laboratory 003


  • Gerard Wong

    Gerard Wong


    Gerard C. L. Wong is a Professor in the Department of Bioengineering, Department of Chemistry, and the California NanoSystems Institute at UCLA.  Wong received his BS and PhD at Caltech physics and Berkeley physics respectively.  He joined the Materials Science & Engineering Dept and Physics Dept at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2000 and moved to UCLA in 2009. His research recognition includes: the Beckman Young Investigator Award, Alfred P Sloan Fellowship, and Sackler Distinguished Speaker. He is a Fellow of the American Physical Society (2011), and a Fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology (2016). His current research interests include bacterial biofilms, innate immunity, and antibiotic design. 


Surface sensing, motility appendages and hydrodynamics in early bacterial biofilms

Bacterial biofilms are integrated communities of cells that adhere to surfaces and are fundamental to the ecology and biology of bacteria. The accommodation of a free-swimming cell to a solid surface is a complex process that is not coextensive with cell adhesion. We started a multi-disciplinary study to investigate the interplay between motility appendages, molecular motors, exopolysaccharide production, and hydrodynamics near the surface environment using state of the art tools from different fields that are not usually combined, including theoretical physics, community tracking with single cell resolution, genetics, and microbiology. We explore themes such as surface selection and hydrodynamics in cells that initially attach to a surface, surface sensing and its relation to multi-generational signaling via secondary messengers and precise downstream motility consequences, and the subsequent onset of microcolony organization via interactions between appendages and exopolysaccharides.


Free and open to the university community and the public.


Howard Stone, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering | Ned Wingreen, Department of Molecular Biology