University of Dundee

"Physical forces driving migration, division and folding of epithelial sheets"

Event Date: 
Friday, September 29, 2017 - 11:00 to 12:00
Event Location: 
MSI Small Lecture Theatre
Dr Rastko Sknepnek
Event Speaker: 
Professor Xavier Trepat
Institute for Bioengineering of Catalonia (IBEC), Barcelona
Event Type: 



Biological processes such as morphogenesis, tissue regeneration, and cancer invasion are driven by collective migration, division, and folding of epithelial tissues. Each of these functions is tightly regulated by mechanochemical networks and ultimately driven by physical forces. I will present maps of cell-cell and cell-extracellular matrix (ECM) forces during cell migration and division in a variety of epithelial models, from the expanding MDCK cluster to the regenerating zebrafish epicardium. These maps revealed that migration and division in growing tissues are regulated cooperatively. I will also present direct measurements of epithelial traction, tension, and luminal pressure in three-dimensional epithelia of controlled size and shape. By examining epithelial tension over time-scales of hours and for nominal strains reaching 300%, we establish a remarkable degree of tensional homeostasis mediated by cellular adaptations.