WEB-REPORT
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Group 1-39
Project Title Investigating the potential of Physarum polycephalum for use as programmable bio-wires
Synopsis

This study seeks to investigate the effects of varying glucose
concentrations on the peak voltage across Physarum protoplasmic tubes
and to gain insight into choice mechanisms of Physarum when
faced with oat flakes treated with different solutions, thus exploring
the possibility of using the slime mold as programmable bio-wires.
Physarum was left to grow towards oat flakes spiked with varying
glucose concentrations (ranging from 100-2500 mM) before recording
the peak voltage across its protoplasmic tubes, a quantification of the
inherent oscillatory (cytoplasmic streaming) mechanism in Physarum.
Optimum glucose concentration was determined to be approximately
1000 mM as Physarum protoplasmic tubes had highest conductivity as
average peak voltage across them is the highest. Interestingly, higher
glucose concentrations impeded the conductive properties of these
bio-wires by significantly lowering the peak voltage. In choice
experiments, Physarum had to choose whether to grow towards oat
flakes spiked with glucose or salt solutions, or oat flakes that were
unspiked. In majority of the set-ups, Physarum grew towards
the glucose-spiked oat flake, indicating that glucose solutions could
be used to control the path taken by Physarum and change the electrical
properties of its protoplasmic tubes.Hence, Physarum bio-wires could
be a potential alternative to metallic wires and be used in the computing
industry.

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Team Members
(Names & Classes)
Group Leader:
CHEW WENXUAN 4S3
 
Group Member/s:
JOEL FOO TAI MENG 4S3
RASVIK KUDUM AOS
SOPHIE WONG AOS