Here we present the results of two distinct projects in the field of cellular mechanics. In the first project, we describe a non-monotonicity in the scaling of force production in actomyosin stress fibers. We develop a continuum mechanical model to explain that non-monotonicity and, using both analytical and numerical techniques, conclude that the scaling is due to an interaction between different physical lengthscales inherent in the actomyosin force-production system. Using singular perturbation methods, we study the model further to make predictions about the physical conditions under which a cell can break symmetry. In the second project, we explore how lipid flow in the plane of the plasma membrane contributes to membrane translocation during cell migration. By numerically solving the Stokes equations, we quantify the magnitude of the force necessary to generate this flow, and analyze how the presence of transmembrane protein obstacles influences the resulting front-to-rear membrane tension gradient. We make several analytic estimates of the mechanical importance of this membrane tension for cell motility.
|Commitee:||Donev, Aleks, Peskin, Charlie, Shelley, Mike, Tranchina, Dan|
|School:||New York University|
|School Location:||United States -- New York|
|Source:||DAI-B 78/05(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Applied Mathematics, Cellular biology, Biophysics|
|Keywords:||Biomathematics, Cell mechanics, Cell motility, Mathematical biology, Membrane, Stress fiber|
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