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Growth and instabilities of healthy and cancerous tissues

Thursday 27th June 2013 - 14:00 to 14:45
Center for Mathematical Sciences
During development or during tumor growth, cells organize collectively by cell division and apoptosis in a tissue. The aim of our work is to build up theoretical tools to describe the mechanical properties of tissues and to apply them to various biologically relevant situations.

We first show that because of the coupling between cell division and the local stress, a tissue can be considered as a visco-elastic liquid at time scales larger than the cell division time. We then show recent model experiments on cell aggregates showing the effect of mechanical stress on tissue growth.

Finally, we use the hydrodynamic description to discuss the steady state structure of villis which are the protrusions of the surface of the intestine. We describe the formation of villis as a buckling instability of a polar cell monolayer. In addition to the mechanical properties, we also consider the role of stem cells and their differentiation.

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University of Cambridge Research Councils UK
    Clay Mathematics Institute London Mathematical Society NM Rothschild and Sons