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IBEC Seminar: David Caballero
Friday, January 16, 2015 @ 10:00 am–11:00 am
The cell ratchet: interplay between protrusion activity and adhesion determines cell motion
David Caballero, Nanobioengineering group, IBEC
Many physiological and pathological processes involve directed cell motion, either collective or as single cells. Typically, migrating cells are characterized by a polarized morphology with extending and retracting protrusions at the leading edge. However, cell motion is a much more complex phenomenon. Cells show heterogeneous morphologies and high protrusive dynamics. This prevents the quantitative prediction of cell motion and the identification of the cellular mechanism responsible of directionality. In this seminar, I discuss about the importance of protrusion fluctuations in the physicochemical mechanism of directed cell motion. I show how their spatiotemporal distribution and dynamics determines univocally the direction of cell motion on NIH3T3 fibroblasts deposited on micropatterned adhesive ratchets. Novel physical concepts describing short-term cell motility are introduced which allows the prediction of parameters characteristic of long-term motion of cells. The obtained results may have important implications for the study of biological phenomena where directed cell migration is involved, such as morphogenesis or cancer.