Scientists explain how cells generate the shape of tissues

Cellular tissues are structures composed of body muscle cells having a particular shape. For biologists, how these tissues generate their structure remains incomprehensible. In a recent study, scientists attempted to understand the creation of structures by experimenting with muscle cells in test tubes.

According to these researchers, these cells are able to Contract and can easily align. Once moved in a circle around a vortex, these cells can orient themselves spontaneously and combine their energy to allow the constitution ofan organized structure.

In addition, the study was carried out by a group of scientists from the University of Geneva (UNIGE) in Switzerland. The results of this research have enabled researchers and biologists to better understand the fabric capacity cell to self-form.

Some topological defects at the origin of spirals

To understand the how topological faults work (circular movement of cells), the researchers grew cells on sticky plates. Under these conditions, the scientists found that the cells move spontaneously in a circleforming a tornado.

It’s about confining our muscle cells to a surface surrounded by repulsive molecules that force them to form a circle. The cells quickly begin to spin together to form an orderly spiral. We can observe spontaneous movement of cells, as when a crowd is forced to walk through a room and ends up going in the same direction for ease. »

Aurélien Roux, Professor of the Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Sciences, UNIGE

Furthermore, these researchers suggest that once this tornado is formed, the energy generated by all the cells accumulates in its center. This phenomenon causes the training news cells as well as their division.

Thus ordered, only one topological defect remains in the center of the circle. The spiral, which concentrates cellular forces in its center, accumulates newly formed cells, and therefore cell division. Thus, the spiral will gradually become a vortex, creating a protuberance in the middle of the disk.»

Karsten Kruse, lead researcher of the study

Spontaneous morphogenesis

Also within the framework of the study, the researchers claimed that the cells form a tornado-like structure which causes the emergence of a particular form of fabric. This structure would be similar to that observed during the development of an embryo.

Moreover, the combination of the forces of these cells forms an orderly spiral which maintains a cylindrical projection. This phenomenon is a process of spontaneous morphogenesisdue to the unique characteristics of multicellular organisms.


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