May 10, 2016

Measuring Mechanodynamics using an Unsupported Epithelial Monolayer Grown at an Air-Water Interface

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Corinne GulleksonAndrew Pelling


Actomyosin contraction and relaxation in a monolayer is a fundamental biophysical process in development and homeostasis. Current methods used to characterize the mechanodynamics of monolayers often involve cells grown on solid supports such as glass or gels. The results of these studies are fundamentally influenced by these supporting structures. Here, we describe a new methodology for measuring the mechanodynamics of epithelial monolayers by culturing cells at an air-liquid interface. These model monolayers are grown in the absence of any supporting structures allowing us to remove cell-substrate effects. This method's potential was evaluated by observing and quantifying the generation and release of internal stresses upon actomyosin contraction (32±50Pa) and relaxation (190±40Pa) in response to chemical treatments. This is in contrast to the results observed in monolayers grown on solid substrates (glass and gels) where movement was drastically muted. Tracking the displacement of cell nuclei, cell edges and cluster perimeter allowed us to quantify the strain dynamics in the monolayer indicating the reliability of this method. New insights were also revealed with this approach. Although unsupported monolayers exhibited clear ...Continue Reading

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Mentioned in this Paper

General Adaptation Syndrome
Biophysical Processes
Actomyosin Location
Cell-Matrix Junction
Contraction (Finding)
Transcription Factors, General
Cell Nucleus
Epithelial Cells

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