Seminar - Probing Mechanical Principles of Cell-Matrix Interaction by Dr. Jin Qian
Date: 14 March 2013 (Thursday)
Time: 11:00 am – 12:00 pm
Venue: EF305, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University
With rapid advances in both biological and physical sciences, there exist unprecedented opportunities and promises at the interface between mechanics and cellular/molecular biology. A number of recent developments on cell’s responses to its mechanical environment highlight the importance of mechanics research in this field. In this talk, I will present some recent theoretical studies aimed at probing the basic mechanical principles of focal contacts in cell-matrix adhesion via stochastic-elasticity models. Discussions will be organized around the following questions: Why is there a micron-scale size limit on focal adhesions in cell-matrix interaction? Why do many cells prefer stiffer substrates? How does the stability of focal adhesions depend on the stress fiber orientation? Why are cytoskeletal contractile forces necessary to stabilize focal adhesions? With these questions in mind, the talk will provide possible explanations for a wide range of experimental observations and suggest multiple mechanisms by which cells can actively control adhesion and deadhesion via cytoskeletal contractile machinery in response to mechanical properties of their surroundings.
Jin Qian received his B.E. degree from Peking University in 2000, and his M.S. degree from Institute of Mechanics, Chinese Academy of Sciences in 2003. He entered the solid mechanics group at Brown University in March 2006, obtained an Sc.M. degree in Applied Mathematics in May 2009, and completed his Ph.D. degree requirements from School of Engineering at Brown University in August 2009. He was a Postdoctoral Fellow working in Coulter Department of Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology for two years, and joined Zhejiang University in October 2011.