Mechanisms governing the visco-elastic responses of living cells assessed by foam and tensegrity models

Abstract : The visco-elastic properties of living cells, measured to date by various authors, vary considerably, depending on the experimental methods and/or on the theoretical models used. In the present study, two mechanisms thought to be involved in cellular visco-elastic responses were analysed, based on the idea that the cytoskeleton plays a fundamental role in cellular mechanical responses. For this purpose, the predictions of an open unit-cell model and a 30-element visco-elastic tensegrity model were tested, taking into consideration similar properties of the constitutive F-actin. The quantitative predictions of the time constant and viscosity modulus obtained by both models were compared with previously published experimental data obtained from living cells. The small viscosity modulus values ($10^0-10^3$ pa.s) predicted by the tensegrity model may reflect the combined contributions of the spatially rearranged constitutive filaments and the internal tension to the overall cytoskeleton response to external loading. In contrast, the high viscosity modulus values ($10^3-10^5$ pa.s) predicted by the unit-cell model may rather reflect the mechanical response of the cytoskeleton to the bending of the constitutive filaments and/or to the deformation of internal components. The present results suggest the existence of a close link between the overall visco-elastic response of micromanipulated cells and the underlying architecture.
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Medical and Biological Engineering and Computing, Springer Verlag, 2003, 41, pp.733-739. 〈10.1007/BF02349982〉
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Patrick Canadas, Valérie Laurent, Patrick Chabrand, Daniel Isabey, Sylvie Wendling-Mansuy. Mechanisms governing the visco-elastic responses of living cells assessed by foam and tensegrity models. Medical and Biological Engineering and Computing, Springer Verlag, 2003, 41, pp.733-739. 〈10.1007/BF02349982〉. 〈hal-00088334〉

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