General theory for the mechanics of confined microtubule asters

Ma, Rui and Laan, Liedewij and Dogterom, Marileen and Pavin, Nenad and Jülicher, Frank (2014) General theory for the mechanics of confined microtubule asters. New Journal of Physics, 16. 13018 -20. ISSN 1367-2630

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Abstract

In cells, dynamic microtubules organize into asters or spindles to assist positioning of organelles. Two types of forces are suggested to contribute to the positioning process: (i) microtubule-growth based pushing forces ; and (ii) motor protein mediated pulling forces. In this paper, we present a general theory to account for aster positioning in a confinement of arbitrary shape. The theory takes account of microtubule nucleation, growth, catastrophe, slipping, as well as interaction with cortical force generators. We calculate microtubule distributions and forces acting on microtubule organizing centers in a sphere and in an ellipsoid. Positioning mechanisms based on both pushing forces and pulling forces can be distinguished in our theory for different parameter regimes or in different geometries. In addition, we investigate positioning of microtubule asters in the case of asymmetric distribution of motors. This analysis enables us to characterize situations relevant for Caenorrhabditis elegans embryos.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: caenorhabditis-elegans embryo; cortical dynein; force generators; pulling forces; spindle; position; dynamics; cells; elongation; nuclear
Date: 2014
Subjects: NATURAL SCIENCES > Physics
Additional Information: © 2014 IOP Publishing Ltd and Deutsche Physikalische Gesellschaft. Content from this work may be used under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 licence. Any further distribution of this work must maintain attribution to the author(s) and the title of the work, journal citation and DOI. Received 27 July 2013, revised 17 November 2013. Accepted for publication 12 December 2013. Published 15 January 2014.
Divisions: Faculty of Science > Department of Physics
Publisher: IOP Institute of Physics
Depositing User: Gordana Stubičan Ladešić
Date Deposited: 04 Dec 2017 07:30
Last Modified: 04 Dec 2017 07:30
URI: http://digre.pmf.unizg.hr/id/eprint/5740

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