Navigation Links
Living cells behave like fluid-filled sponges
Date:1/7/2013

Animal cells behave like fluid-filled sponges in response to being mechanically deformed according to new research published today in Nature Materials.

Scientists from the London Centre for Nanotechnology (LCN) at UCL have shown that animal cells behave according to the theory of 'poroelasticity' when mechanically stimulated in a way similar to that experienced in organs within the body. The results indicate that the rate of cell deformation in response to mechanical stress is limited by how quickly water can redistribute within the cell interior.

Poroelasticity was originally formulated to describe the behaviour of water-saturated soils and has important applications in the fields of rock engineering and petro-physics. It is commonly used in the petroleum industry. Poroelastic models describe cells as being analogous to fluid-filled sponges. Indeed, cells are constituted of a sponge-like porous elastic matrix (comprising the cytoskeleton, organelles, and macromolecules) bathed in an interstitial fluid (the cytosol).

In this analogy, the rate at which the fluid-filled sponge can be deformed is limited by how fast internal water can redistribute within the sponge in response to deformation. This rate is dictated by three parameters: the stiffness of the sponge matrix, the size of the pores within the sponge matrix, and the viscosity of the interstitial fluid.

To study cellular responses, LCN scientists used cell-sized levers to apply rapid well-controlled deformations on the cell surface and monitored the temporal response of cells to these deformations. Close examination of the experimental results revealed that the rate of cellular deformation was limited by how rapidly water could redistribute within the cell interior. Experimental measurements indicated that this sponge-like behaviour of cells likely occurs during normal function of organs such as the lungs and the cardiovascular system.

Emad Moeendarbary, lead author of the paper from the LCN said: "In the cardiovascular system, some tissues encounter extreme mechanical conditions. Heart valves can typically withstand 7-fold increases in their length in less than one second. The poroelastic nature of cells may allow them to behave similarly to shock absorbers when exposed to these extreme mechanical conditions."

To experimentally verify the fluid-filled sponge model, researchers manipulated the size of the cellular pores using chemical and genetic tools and showed that the rate of cellular deformation was affected by the pore size, as suggested by the theory of poroelasticity.

Guillaume Charras, senior co-author of the paper from the LCN said: "Cells can detect the mechanical forces they are subjected to and modify their behaviour accordingly. How changes in the mechanical environment are converted into biochemical information that the cell can interpret remains unknown. A better understanding of the physics of the cellular material is a first step towards formulating possible mechanisms through which this could occur."


'/>"/>

Contact: Clare Ryan
clare.ryan@ucl.ac.uk
44-077-475-65056
University College London
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology technology :

1. 3-D movies in your living room -- without the glasses
2. Novo Nordisk To Award $80,000 To Local Programs That Help People Living With Diabetes In Detroit As Part Of Educational Initiative
3. JCVI Researchers, as Part of NIH Human Microbiome Project Consortium, Publish Papers Detailing the Variety and Abundance of Microbes Living on and in the Human Body
4. Harvards Wyss Institute creates living human gut-on-a-chip
5. Systems Alliance Launches Redesigned Website for The Living Legacy Foundation of Maryland
6. CellerateRX® Added to List of Preferred Products for Golden Living Healthcare Network
7. Mesenchymal Stem Cells Mobilize Body’s Own Healing Cells According to New Research Published in STEM CELLS Translational Medicine
8. Autoimmune disease retraining white blood cells
9. Breast cancer cells growing in 3D-matrix revert to normal
10. The birth of new cardiac cells
11. On the hunt for rare cancer cells
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:2/17/2017)... ... February 17, 2017 , ... Academy of Model ... world’s leading maker of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), are launching a joint program ... drones effectively, and support educational outreach efforts. , AMA and DJI will collaborate ...
(Date:2/16/2017)... Brussels, Belgium (PRWEB) , ... February 16, 2017 , ... ... Development (SIOTAD) framework primarily aimed at the agricultural industry. Pilot studies are about to ... phytosanitary products through IoT, Big Data and 5G innovations. The concept is expected to ...
(Date:2/16/2017)... (OTCMKTS: IMMG), an early-stage biotechnology company harnessing the power of ... negative breast cancer (TNBC), announced today their completion of the ... The YEi Start in France ... business in France and Europe.  ImMAGE ... an intensive one week immersion in France ...
(Date:2/16/2017)... BEACH, Fla. , Feb. 16, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... company revolutionizing the development of liquid biopsy tests ... has entered into an exclusive license agreement with ... distribute MDNA,s proprietary liquid biopsy test for prostate ... South Korea . This is the ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:2/2/2017)... JACKSONVILLE, Fla. , Feb. 2, 2017 /PRNewswire/ ... ), a clinical-stage immuno-oncology company specializing in the ... vaccines for the treatment of cancer and metastatic ... multi-gram scale-up and GMP manufacturing of a second ... T-cell vaccine targeting folate receptor alpha. The manufactured ...
(Date:2/2/2017)... , Feb. 1, 2017  Central to its ... meaningful advances worldwide, The Japan Prize Foundation today ... who have pushed the envelope in their respective ... Communication. Three scientists are being recognized with the ... that not only contribute to the advancement of ...
(Date:1/31/2017)... Jan. 31, 2017  Spero Therapeutics, LLC, a ... the treatment of bacterial infections, today announced it ... candidates from Pro Bono Bio Ltd (PBB) to ... multi-drug resistant forms of Gram-negative bacteria.   The assets ... Ltd, a PBB group company. "The ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):