PIMS - UBC Mathematical Biology Seminar: Naba Mukhtar

  • Date: 05/26/2021
  • Time: 14:05
Naba Mukhtar, UBC



Simulating Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition in Cell Sheets


Epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT), a process in which immotile cells that line surfaces in the body become motile mesenchymal cells, play a crucial role in major processes such as wound healing, embryo development, and cancer growth; therefore, examining the dynamics behind individual and collective cell migration would allow for a better understanding of these processes. It has been previously observed that the protein YAP is activated by external mechanical stimuli and affects the expression and activation of the proteins E-cadherin and Rac1, which are involved in intercellular adhesion and migratory ability respectively. It has also been demonstrated that the mechanical stimulation of expanding cell sheets leads to the formation of finger-like projections and EMT, as well as quantitative differences in properties between cells near the sheet edge and cells away from it. Such cell sheets can be simulated using Morpheus, an agent-based modelling and simulation environment. In this talk, I will propose an ODE model for YAP/Rac1/E-cadherin dynamics and demonstrate that the resulting Morpheus simulation gives results consistent with several observations seen in vitro.

Other Information: 

This event will take place via zoom, please contact Katie Faulkner for connection details.