DOI: 10.1101/460170Nov 2, 2018Paper

Mechanical Interactions between a Cell and an Extracellular Environment Facilitate Durotactic Cell Migration

BioRxiv : the Preprint Server for Biology
Abdel-Rahman HassanTaeyoon Kim


Cell migration is a fundamental process in biological systems, playing an important role for diverse physiological processes. Cells often exhibit directed migration in a specific direction in response to various types of cues. In particular, cells are able to sense the rigidity of surrounding environments and then migrate towards stiffer regions. To understand this mechanosensitive behavior called durotaxis, several computational models have been developed. However, most of the models made phenomenological assumptions to recapitulate durotactic behaviors, significantly limiting insights provided from these studies. In this study, we developed a computational biomechanical model without any phenomenological assumption to illuminate intrinsic mechanisms of durotactic behaviors of cells migrating on a two-dimensional substrate. The model consists of a simplified cell generating contractile forces and a deformable substrate coarse-grained into an irregular triangulated mesh. Using the model, we demonstrated that durotactic behaviors emerge from purely mechanical interactions between the cell and the underlying substrate. We investigated how durotactic migration is regulated by biophysical properties of the substrate, including elas...Continue Reading

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