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Actomyosin contraction induces droplet motility

Abstract : While cell crawling on a solid surface is relatively well understood, and relies on substrate adhesion, some cells can also swim in the bulk, through mechanisms that are still largely unclear. Here, we propose a minimal model for in-bulk self-motility of a droplet containing an isotropic and compressible contractile gel, representing a cell extract containing a disordered actomyosin network. In our model, contraction mediates a feedback loop between myosin-induced flow and advectioninduced myosin accumulation, which leads to clustering and a locally enhanced flow. Interactions of the emerging clusters with the droplet membrane break flow symmetry and set the whole droplet into motion. Depending mainly on the balance between contraction and diffusion, this motion can be either straight or circular. Our simulations and analytical results provide a framework allowing to study in-bulk myosin-driven cell motility in living cells and to design synthetic motile active matter droplets.
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https://hal-amu.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-03174993
Contributor : Sébastien Poulain <>
Submitted on : Friday, March 19, 2021 - 4:32:42 PM
Last modification on : Tuesday, March 23, 2021 - 3:27:12 AM

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Thomas Le Goff, Benno Liebchen, Davide Marenduzzo. Actomyosin contraction induces droplet motility. Biophysical Journal, Biophysical Society, 2020, 119 (5), pp.1025-1032. ⟨10.1016/j.bpj.2020.06.029⟩. ⟨hal-03174993⟩

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