University of Dundee

'From cell dynamics to epithelial tissue patterning: movements and forces during fly metamorphosis'

Event Date: 
Thursday, March 23, 2017 - 13:00 to 14:00
Event Location: 
MSI Small Lecture Theatre
Professor Kees Weijer FRSE
Dr Rastko Sknepnek
Event Speaker: 
Francois Graner
MSC University Paris
Event Type: 
All Welcome
Development, homeostasis and regeneration of tissues result from a complex combination of genetics and mechanics. Tremendous progress in experimental techniques now provide access to quantitative cell-scale information both  on the genes being expressed and on the shapes of cells within tissues. To use and interpret these data, we propose a novel and rigorous multiscale approach, which is a powerful tool to uncover mechanisms governing tissue development.

Our model system is the Drosophila metamorphosis, during which the fly changes from larval to adult shape within a few days. We film the fly back (the dorsal thorax) and its wing over several orders of  magnitude in space and time. We characterize quantitatively, within a unified description, each cell process: cell divisions, rearrangements, cell size and shape changes, and apoptoses.

We obtain comprehensive statistical maps of cell dynamics. We relate them to tissue scale dynamics, namely tissue growth and morphogenesis. While globally cell shape changes, rearrangements and divisions all significantly participate in tissue morphogenesis, locally, their relative participations display major variations in space and time. In addition, measuring forces and mechanical stresses in situ in the developing tissues evidences unexpected interplays between patterns of tissue elongation, cell division and stress.

B. Guirao, S.U. Rigaud, F. Bosveld, et al.
Unified quantitative characterization of epithelial tissue development