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Institute of Bioengineering



Manuel Thery. Directed cytoskeleton self-organization

Image: Manuel Thery
Manuel Thery

Date: 28 January 2015   Time: 15:00 - 17:00

Cytoskeleton architecture supports a large number of cellular functions. Cytoskeleton networks form complex intra-cellular structures resulting from the interplay between intrinsic self-organization properties and the conditions imposed by spatial boundaries. Along these boundaries, cytoskeleton filaments are anchored, repulsed, aligned or reoriented. Such local effects can guide cytoskeleton assembly over relatively large distances and led to the formation of high order structures. The experimental manipulation of spatial boundaries using micro-fabrication methods has revealed the underlying physical processes directing cytoskeleton self-organization. Here we will illustrate how the directed growth of actin and microtubules in vitro from purified components shed new light on these fundamental organizing principles. We will also argue that these biological self-organization processes constitute a tremendous source of inspiration for future industrial manufacturing. As an example we will describe the biofabrication of 3D electrical connections.

Location:  David Sizer & DS Foyer in the Bancroft Building, Mile End.