Statistical and Biological Physics

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Many key intracellular processes are spatially guided by self-organized protein patterns, which form through an interplay between diffusion and biochemical reactions. Biochemical coupling (via protein attachment) between cytosol and membrane is a crucial and recurring motif among the formation of protein patterns. In particular, some key proteins are capable of recruiting other proteins from the cytosol to the membrane, which results in a nonlinear feedback mechanism. more

There is now growing evidence of the impact of geometric confinement on the patterns of motion of biological materials. For example, experiments on cell monolayers and bacterial suspensions have shown that the interplay between the activity of the cells and the confinement size can stabilise otherwise chaotic flows of cells into coherent motion. However, many such cellular systems are not composed of conserved number of particles. Indeed, in most natural conditions, cells in a monolayer or bacterial cells in a biofilm regularly proliferate and form a progressive front that infiltrates the surrounding environment. No current continuum theory in cell mechanics or in active matter can explain the mechanism of active matter invasion within confined spaces. more