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Energy saving mechanisms, collective behavior and the variation range hypothesis in biological systems: A review.

Authors
  • Trenchard, Hugh1
  • Perc, Matjaž2
  • 1 805 647 Michigan Street, Victoria, BC V8 V 1S9, Canada. Electronic address: [email protected] , (Canada)
  • 2 Faculty of Natural Sciences and Mathematics, University of Maribor, Koroška cesta 160, SI-2000 Maribor, Slovenia; CAMTP-Center for Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics, University of Maribor, Krekova 2, SI-2000 Maribor, Slovenia. , (Slovenia)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Bio Systems
Publication Date
Sep 01, 2016
Volume
147
Pages
40–66
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1016/j.biosystems.2016.05.010
PMID: 27288936
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

Energy saving mechanisms are ubiquitous in nature. Aerodynamic and hydrodynamic drafting, vortice uplift, Bernoulli suction, thermoregulatory coupling, path following, physical hooks, synchronization, and cooperation are only some of the better-known examples. While drafting mechanisms also appear in non-biological systems such as sedimentation and particle vortices, the broad spectrum of these mechanisms appears more diversely in biological systems that include bacteria, spermatozoa, various aquatic species, birds, land animals, semi-fluid dwellers like turtle hatchlings, as well as human systems. We present the thermodynamic framework for energy saving mechanisms, and we review evidence in favor of the variation range hypothesis. This hypothesis posits that, as an evolutionary process, the variation range between strongest and weakest group members converges on the equivalent energy saving quantity that is generated by the energy saving mechanism. We also review self-organized structures that emerge due to energy saving mechanisms, including convective processes that can be observed in many systems over both short and long time scales, as well as high collective output processes in which a form of collective position locking occurs. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

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