Chalmers Conferences, 9th European Conference on Mathematical and Theoretical Biology

Simulation of cell mechanics in a micropipette aspiration experiment using a highly detail model
Paul van liedekerke, Johannes Neitsch, Bart Smeets, Tim Odenthal, Herman Ramon, Dirk Drasdo

Last modified: 2014-06-09


We present a detailed mathematical model for a mammalian cell based on a
scaolding structure with nodes connected by viscoelastic elements. The model
captures several basic yet necessary mechanical features: (i) It can incorporate
-by construction- a membrane, cytoskeleton and nucleus, and can adapt to ar-
bitrary shapes. (ii) It can mimic the adhesion to a substrate or to another cell
with a dynamics that is in agreement with experimental observations. (iii) it
contains an approach to simulate cell division, producing two identical adjecent
cells. (iv) The dynamics is sought to converge upon renement of the nodal
mesh and hence the required accuracy can be arbitrarily set.
In this talk, our goal is to show the model performing simulations of a micro
pipette aspiration experiment (see gures). We seek to investigate the force-
displacement curve for two cells, thereby studying the in
uence of physical pa-
rameters of the cells e.g. adhesion strength and the density of the cytoskeleton.
We also seek to investigate the mechanical stress distribution experienced by
the cell membrane, cytoskeleton and nucleus during aspiration.With the model, we eventually want to address upcoming key questions aris-
ing in mechanobiology such as mechanotransduction, multicellular architecture
and tissue organization.