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See detailSpatial Fluctuations at Vertices of Epithelial Layers: Quantification of Regulation by Rho Pathway
Fodor, Etienne UL; Mehandia, Vishwajeet; Comelles, Jordi et al

in BIOPHYSICAL JOURNAL (2018), 114(4), 939-946

In living matter, shape fluctuations induced by acto-myosin are usually studied in vitro via reconstituted gels, whose properties are controlled by changing the concentrations of actin, myosin, and cross ... [more ▼]

In living matter, shape fluctuations induced by acto-myosin are usually studied in vitro via reconstituted gels, whose properties are controlled by changing the concentrations of actin, myosin, and cross-linkers. Such an approach deliberately avoids consideration of the complexity of biochemical signaling inherent to living systems. Acto-myosin activity inside living cells is mainly regulated by the Rho signaling pathway which is composed of multiple layers of coupled activators and inhibitors. Here, we investigate how such a pathway controls the dynamics of confluent epithelial tissues by tracking the displacements of the junction points between cells. Using a phenomenological model to analyze the vertex fluctuations, we rationalize the effects of different Rho signaling targets on the emergent tissue activity by quantifying the effective diffusion coefficient, and the persistence time and length of the fluctuations. Our results reveal an unanticipated correlation between layers of activation/inhibition and spatial fluctuations within tissues. Overall, this work connects regulation via biochemical signaling with mesoscopic spatial fluctuations, with potential application to the study of structural rearrangements in epithelial tissues. [less ▲]

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