Emergent cell and tissue dynamics from subcellular modeling of active biomechanical processes

S. A. Sandersius, C. J. Weijer, T. J. Newman

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    59 Citations (Scopus)


    Cells and the tissues they form are not passive material bodies. Cells change their behavior in response to external biochemical and biomechanical cues. Behavioral changes, such as morphological deformation, proliferation and migration, are striking in many multicellular processes such as morphogenesis, wound healing and cancer progression. Cell-based modeling of these phenomena requires algorithms that can capture active cell behavior and their emergent tissue-level phenotypes. In this paper, we report on extensions of the subcellular element model to model active biomechanical subcellular processes. These processes lead to emergent cell and tissue level phenotypes at larger scales, including (i) adaptive shape deformations in cells responding to slow stretching, (ii) viscous flow of embryonic tissues, and (iii) streaming patterns of chemotactic cells in epithelial-like sheets. In each case, we connect our simulation results to recent experiments.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number045007
    Number of pages14
    JournalPhysical Biology
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - Aug 2011


    • Primitive streak form
    • Living cell
    • Dictyostelium-discoideum
    • Smooth muscle
    • Migration
    • Morphogenesis
    • Regeneration
    • Mechanics
    • Responses
    • Movement


    Dive into the research topics of 'Emergent cell and tissue dynamics from subcellular modeling of active biomechanical processes'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this