Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

CCNY-Yale researchers make shape shifting cell breakthrough

12.12.2018

A new computational model developed by researchers from The City College of New York and Yale gives a clearer picture of the structure and mechanics of soft, shape-changing cells that could provide a better understanding of cancerous tumor growth, wound healing, and embryonic development.

Mark D. Shattuck, professor of physics at City College's Benjamin Levich Institute, and researchers at Yale developed the new efficient computational model. It allows simulated particles to realistically change shape while conserving volume during interactions with other particles. Their results appear in the latest edition of Physical Review Letters.


Deformable particles like cells can fill complex geometries more efficiently than fixed shapes like circles. With the new deformable particle model introduced by Shattuck and O'Hern, researchers can also simulate deformable systems more efficiently and accurately.

Credit: Mark Shattuck, CCNY

Developing computer simulations of particles, such as sand grains and ball bearings, is straightforward because they do not readily change shape. Doing the same for cells and other deformable particles is more difficult, and the computational models researchers currently use do not accurately capture how soft particles deform.

The computational model developed by Shattuck and lead investigator from Yale, Corey O'Hern, tracks points on the surfaces of polygonal cells. Each surface point moves independently, in accordance with its surroundings and neighboring particles, allowing the shape of the particle to change. It is more computationally demanding than current simulations, but necessary to correctly model particle deformation.

"We now have an efficient accurate computational model to investigate how discrete, deformable particles pack," Shattuck said. It also allows researchers to easily adjust cell-cell interactions, consider directed motion, and can be used for both 2D and 3D systems.

One unexpected result from the model shows that deformable particles must deviate from a sphere by more than 15% to completely fill a space.

"In our new model, if no external pressure is applied to the system, the particles are spherical," O'Hern said. "As the pressure is increased, the particles deform, increasing the fraction of space that they occupy. When the particles completely fill the space, they will be 15% deformed. Whether it's bubbles, droplets, or cells, it's a universal result for soft, particle systems."

Among other applications, this technology may give researchers a new tool to examine how cancerous tumors metastasize. "We can now create realistic models of the packing of cells in tumors using computer simulations, and ask important questions such as whether a cell in a tumor needs to change its shape to become more capable of motion and eventually leave the tumor."

Media Contact

Jay Mwamba
jmwamba@ccny.cuny.edu
212-650-7580

http://www2.ccny.cuny.edu 

Jay Mwamba | EurekAlert!
Further information:
https://www.ccny.cuny.edu/news/ccny-yale-researchers-make-shape-shifting-cell-breakthrough

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht The taming of the light screw
22.03.2019 | Max-Planck-Institut für Struktur und Dynamik der Materie

nachricht Magnetic micro-boats
21.03.2019 | Max-Planck-Institut für Polymerforschung

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: The taming of the light screw

DESY and MPSD scientists create high-order harmonics from solids with controlled polarization states, taking advantage of both crystal symmetry and attosecond electronic dynamics. The newly demonstrated technique might find intriguing applications in petahertz electronics and for spectroscopic studies of novel quantum materials.

The nonlinear process of high-order harmonic generation (HHG) in gases is one of the cornerstones of attosecond science (an attosecond is a billionth of a...

Im Focus: Magnetic micro-boats

Nano- and microtechnology are promising candidates not only for medical applications such as drug delivery but also for the creation of little robots or flexible integrated sensors. Scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research (MPI-P) have created magnetic microparticles, with a newly developed method, that could pave the way for building micro-motors or guiding drugs in the human body to a target, like a tumor. The preparation of such structures as well as their remote-control can be regulated using magnetic fields and therefore can find application in an array of domains.

The magnetic properties of a material control how this material responds to the presence of a magnetic field. Iron oxide is the main component of rust but also...

Im Focus: Self-healing coating made of corn starch makes small scratches disappear through heat

Due to the special arrangement of its molecules, a new coating made of corn starch is able to repair small scratches by itself through heat: The cross-linking via ring-shaped molecules makes the material mobile, so that it compensates for the scratches and these disappear again.

Superficial micro-scratches on the car body or on other high-gloss surfaces are harmless, but annoying. Especially in the luxury segment such surfaces are...

Im Focus: Stellar cartography

The Potsdam Echelle Polarimetric and Spectroscopic Instrument (PEPSI) at the Large Binocular Telescope (LBT) in Arizona released its first image of the surface magnetic field of another star. In a paper in the European journal Astronomy & Astrophysics, the PEPSI team presents a Zeeman- Doppler-Image of the surface of the magnetically active star II Pegasi.

A special technique allows astronomers to resolve the surfaces of faraway stars. Those are otherwise only seen as point sources, even in the largest telescopes...

Im Focus: Heading towards a tsunami of light

Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology and the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, have proposed a way to create a completely new source of radiation. Ultra-intense light pulses consist of the motion of a single wave and can be described as a tsunami of light. The strong wave can be used to study interactions between matter and light in a unique way. Their research is now published in the scientific journal Physical Review Letters.

"This source of radiation lets us look at reality through a new angle - it is like twisting a mirror and discovering something completely different," says...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

International Modelica Conference with 330 visitors from 21 countries at OTH Regensburg

11.03.2019 | Event News

Selection Completed: 580 Young Scientists from 88 Countries at the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting

01.03.2019 | Event News

LightMAT 2019 – 3rd International Conference on Light Materials – Science and Technology

28.02.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Solving the efficiency of Gram-negative bacteria

22.03.2019 | Life Sciences

Bacteria bide their time when antibiotics attack

22.03.2019 | Life Sciences

Open source software helps researchers extract key insights from huge sensor datasets

22.03.2019 | Information Technology

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>