Staff member

Staff member publications

Pensalfini M, Golde T, Trepat X, Arroyo M, (2023). Nonaffine Mechanics of Entangled Networks Inspired by Intermediate Filaments Physical Review Letters 131, 058101

Inspired by massive intermediate filament (IF) reorganization in superstretched epithelia, we examine computationally the principles controlling the mechanics of a set of entangled filaments whose ends slide on the cell boundary. We identify an entanglement metric and threshold beyond which random loose networks respond nonaffinely and nonlinearly to stretch by self-organizing into structurally optimal star-shaped configurations. A simple model connecting cellular and filament strains links emergent mechanics to cell geometry, network topology, and filament mechanics. We identify a safety net mechanism in IF networks and provide a framework to harness entanglement in soft fibrous materials.

JTD Keywords: Behavior

Marín-Llauradó A, Kale S, Ouzeri A, Golde T, Sunyer R, Torres-Sánchez A, Latorre E, Gómez-González M, Roca-Cusachs P, Arroyo M, Trepat X, (2023). Mapping mechanical stress in curved epithelia of designed size and shape Nature Communications 14, 4014

The function of organs such as lungs, kidneys and mammary glands relies on the three-dimensional geometry of their epithelium. To adopt shapes such as spheres, tubes and ellipsoids, epithelia generate mechanical stresses that are generally unknown. Here we engineer curved epithelial monolayers of controlled size and shape and map their state of stress. We design pressurized epithelia with circular, rectangular and ellipsoidal footprints. We develop a computational method, called curved monolayer stress microscopy, to map the stress tensor in these epithelia. This method establishes a correspondence between epithelial shape and mechanical stress without assumptions of material properties. In epithelia with spherical geometry we show that stress weakly increases with areal strain in a size-independent manner. In epithelia with rectangular and ellipsoidal cross-section we find pronounced stress anisotropies that impact cell alignment. Our approach enables a systematic study of how geometry and stress influence epithelial fate and function in three-dimensions.© 2023. The Author(s).

JTD Keywords: cell, forces, morphogenesis, tension, E-cadherin

Golde, T., Glaser, M., Tutmarc, C., Elbalasy, I., Huster, C., Busteros, G., Smith, D. M., Herrmann, H., Käs, J. A., Schnauß, J., (2019). The role of stickiness in the rheology of semiflexible polymers Soft Matter 15, (24), 4865-4872

Semiflexible polymers form central structures in biological material. Modelling approaches usually neglect influences of polymer-specific molecular features aiming to describe semiflexible polymers universally. Here, we investigate the influence of molecular details on networks assembled from filamentous actin, intermediate filaments, and synthetic DNA nanotubes. In contrast to prevalent theoretical assumptions, we find that bulk properties are affected by various inter-filament interactions. We present evidence that these interactions can be merged into a single parameter in the frame of the glassy wormlike chain model. The interpretation of this parameter as a polymer specific stickiness is consistent with observations from macro-rheological measurements and reptation behaviour. Our findings demonstrate that stickiness should generally not be ignored in semiflexible polymer models.