Spontaneous shear flow in confined cellular nematics.
ABSTRACT: In embryonic development or tumor evolution, cells often migrate collectively within confining tracks defined by their microenvironment 1,2. In some of these situations, the displacements within a cell strand are antiparallel 3, giving rise to shear flows. However, the mechanisms underlying these spontaneous flows remain poorly understood. Here, we show that an ensemble of spindle-shaped cells plated in a well-defined stripe spontaneously develop a shear flow whose characteristics depend on the width of the stripe. On wide stripes, the cells self-organize in a nematic phase with a director at a well-defined angle with the stripe's direction, and develop a shear flow close to the stripe's edges. However, on stripes narrower than a critical width, the cells perfectly align with the stripe's direction and the net flow vanishes. A hydrodynamic active gel theory provides an understanding of these observations and identifies the transition between the non-flowing phase oriented along the stripe and the tilted phase exhibiting shear flow as a Fréedericksz transition driven by the activity of the cells. This physical theory is grounded in the active nature of the cells and based on symmetries and conservation laws, providing a generic mechanism to interpret in vivo antiparallel cell displacements.
Project description:Wall-bounded shear flows transitioning to turbulence may self-organize into alternating turbulent and laminar regions forming a stripe pattern with non-trivial oblique orientation. Different experiments and flow simulations identify oblique stripe patterns as the preferred solution of the well-known Navier-Stokes equations, but the origin of stripes and their oblique orientation remains unexplained. In concluding his lectures, Feynman highlights the unexplained stripe pattern hidden in the solution space of the Navier-Stokes equations as an example demonstrating the need for improved theoretical tools to analyze the fluid flow equations. Here we exploit dynamical systems methods and demonstrate the existence of an exact equilibrium solution of the fully nonlinear 3D Navier-Stokes equations that resembles oblique stripe patterns in plane Couette flow. The stripe equilibrium emerges from the well-studied Nagata equilibrium and exists only for a limited range of pattern angles. This suggests a mechanism selecting the non-trivial oblique orientation angle of turbulent-laminar stripes.
Project description:Scanning tunneling microscopy (STM) lithography was utilized to investigate a 12-mer HS-ssDNA self-assembled Au (111) surface. Under low sample bias and high tunneling current, the repeated scanning resulted in the growth of nanostripes. The stripe orientation, the stripe width, and the spacer width between adjacent nanostripes were found to be dependent on their relative locations from dislocation points where two adjacent gold terraces overlap. The stripe and the spacer width also vary with the distance from these points. The results indicate that such stripes may reflect the strain distributions and the release pathway along the Au surfaces. The results also suggest that the presence of HS-ssDNA molecules enhances the lithography processes on the gold surface by acting as force transmitters.
Project description:Single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNTs) are reported to spontaneously align in a rotational pattern by drying a liquid droplet of toluene containing polyfluorene as a dispersant. By situating a droplet of an SWCNT solution around a glass bead, spiral patterns are generated. The parallel alignment of SWCNTs along one stripe of such a pattern is confirmed using scanning electron microscopy and polarized optical microscopy. The orientation order increases toward the outer edge of a stripe. The stripe width in the pattern is proportional to the solute concentration, and the width and position of the stripes follow geometric sequences. The growth of the rotational pattern is also observed in real time. The process of spiral pattern formation is visualized, indicating the role of the annihilation of counter-traveling accompanied by continuous depinning. The geometric sequences for the stripe width and position are explained by the near-constant traveling speed and solute enrichment at the droplet periphery.
Project description:Anisotropic tissue structures provide guidance for navigating neurons in vitro and in vivo. Here we optimized the generation of comparable anisotropic monolayers of astrocytes, endothelial cells, and Schwann cells as a first step toward determining which properties of anisotropic cells are sufficient for nerve guidance. The statistical experimental design method Design of Experiments and the experimental analysis method Response Surface Methodology were applied to improve efficiency and utility. Factors investigated included dimensions of microcontact printed protein patterns, cell density, and culture duration. Protein patterning spacing had the strongest influence. When cells initially aligned at borders and proliferated to fill in spaces, space between stripes was most effective when it was comparable to cell size. Maximizing the area of adhesive molecule coverage was also important for confluence of these types of cells. When cells adhered and aligned over the width of a stripe and broadened to fill spaces, space width about half the cell width was most effective. These findings suggest that if the mechanism of alignment, alignment at borders or over the width of the stripe, is predetermined and the cell size determined, the optimal size of the micropatterning for aligned monolayers of other cell types can be predicted. This study also demonstrates the effective use of DOE and RSM to probe cellular responses to various and multiple factors toward determination of optimal conditions for a desired cellular response.
Project description:In superconductors, a topological configuration of the superconducting order parameter called a superconducting vortex carries magnetization. Such a magnetic topological object behaves like a minute particle generating a magnetic flux. Since the flux is localized with a nanometer scale, the vortex provides a nano-scale probe for local magnetic fields. Here we show that information of magnetic stripes in insulators can be read out by using vortices in an adjacent superconductor film as a probe. The orientation and width of magnetic micro stripes are both transcribed into resistance change of the superconductor through the modulation of vortex mobility affected by local magnetization. By changing the direction of external magnetic fields, zero-field resistance changes continuously according to the stripe orientation, and its modulation magnitude reaches up to 100%. The width of the stripes can also be estimated from the oscillatory magnetoresistance. Our results demonstrate a new possibility for non-volatile analog memory devices based on topological objects.
Project description:Uncoalesced a-plane GaN epitaxial lateral overgrowth (ELO) structures have been synthesized along two mask stripe orientations on a-plane GaN template by MOCVD. The morphology of two ELO GaN structures is performed by Scanning electronic microscopy. The anisotropy of crystalline quality and stress are investigated by micro-Raman spectroscopy. According to the Raman mapping spectra, the variations on the intensity, peak shift and the full width at half maximum (FWHM) of GaN E2 (high) peak indicate that the crystalline quality improvement occurs in the window region of the GaN stripes along , which is caused by the dislocations bending towards the sidewalls. Conversely, the wing regions have better quality with less stress as the dislocations propagated upwards when the GaN stripes are along . Spatial cathodoluminescence mapping results further support the explanation for the different dislocation growth mechanisms in the ELO processes with two different mask stripe orientations.
Project description:Cytochrome oxidase (CO) reveals two compartments in V1 (patches and interpatches) and three compartments in V2 (thin, pale, and thick stripes). Previously, it was shown that thin stripes receive input predominantly from patches. Here we examined the projections to thick and pale stripes in macaques, revealed by retrograde tracer injections. After thick stripe injection, cells were distributed in layer 2/3 (67%), layer 4A (7%), layer 4B (23%), and layer 5/6 (2%). Except in layer 5/6, cells were concentrated in interpatches, with a stronger bias in layer 2/3 (84%) than in layer 4B (75%). After pale stripe injection, cells were found in layer 2/3 (87%), layer 4A (2%), layer 4B (10%), and layer 5/6 (2%). As for thick stripes, cells were located preferentially in interpatches in layer 2/3 (84%) and layer 4B (72%) but not in layer 5/6. Thick stripes received a higher proportion of their input from layer 4B, compared with pale stripes, consistent with reports that thick stripe neurons exhibit a pronounced layer 4B influence. This difference aside, both stripe types receive similar inputs from V1, at least in terms of cortical layer and CO compartment. This finding was bolstered by injecting different tracers into pale and thick stripes; 10-27% of cells were double labeled, with most located in interpatches. These results suggest that the distinctive receptive field properties of neurons in thick and pale stripes are generated by local V2 circuits, or by other specific projections, rather than by differing sources of laminar and compartmental input from V1.
Project description:A simple and inexpensive method is presented employing passive mechanisms to generate centimeters-long gradients of molecules and particles in under a second with only a coated glass slide and a micropipette. A drop of solution is pipetted onto a fluid stripe held in place on a glass slide by a hydrophobic boundary. The resulting difference in curvature pressure drives the flow and creates a concentration gradient by convection. Experiments and theoretical models characterize the flows and gradient profiles and their dependence on the fluid volumes, properties, and stripe geometry. A bench-top rapid prototyping method is outlined to allow the user to design and fabricate the coated slides using only tape and hydrophobic spray. The rapid prototyping method is compatible with microwell arrays, allowing soluble gradients to be applied to cells in shear-protected microwells. The method's simplicity makes it accessible to virtually any researcher or student and its use of passive mechanisms makes it ideal for field use and compatible with point-of-care and global health initiatives.
Project description:Colour patterns of adult fish are produced by several types of pigment cells that distribute in the dermis during juvenile development. The zebrafish, Danio rerio, displays a striking pattern of dark stripes of melanophores interspersed by light stripes of xanthophores. Mutants lacking either cell type do not form proper stripes, indicating that interactions between these two chromatophore types are required for stripe formation. A third cell type, silvery iridophores, participates to render a shiny appearance to the pattern, but its role in stripe formation has been unclear. Mutations in rose (rse) or shady (shd) cause a lack or strong reduction of iridophores in adult fish; in addition, the melanophore number is drastically reduced and stripes are broken up into spots. We show that rse and shd are autonomously required in iridophores, as mutant melanophores form normal sized stripes when confronted with wild-type iridophores in chimeric animals. We describe stripe formation in mutants missing one or two of the three chromatophore types. None of the chromatophore types alone is able to create a pattern but residual stripe formation occurs with two cell types. Our analysis shows that iridophores promote and sustain melanophores. Furthermore, iridophores attract xanthophores, whereas xanthophores repel melanophores. We present a model for the interactions between the three chromatophore types underlying stripe formation. Stripe formation is initiated by iridophores appearing at the horizontal myoseptum, which serves as a morphological landmark for stripe orientation, but is subsequently a self-organising process.
Project description:In this paper we develop a lattice Boltzmann algorithm to simulate red blood cell (RBC) behavior in shear flows. The immersed boundary method is employed to incorporate the fluid-membrane interaction between the flow field and deformable cells. The cell membrane is treated as a neo-Hookean viscoelastic material and a Morse potential is adopted to model the intercellular interaction. Utilizing the available mechanical properties of RBCs, multiple cells have been studied in shear flows using a two-dimensional approximation. These cells aggregate and form a rouleau under the action of intercellular interaction. The equilibrium configuration is related to the interaction strength. The end cells exhibit concave shapes under weak interaction and convex shapes under strong interaction. In shear flows, such a rouleau-like aggregate will rotate or be separated, depending on the relative strengths of the intercellular interaction and hydrodynamic viscous forces. These behaviors are qualitatively similar to experimental observations and show the potential of this numerical scheme for future studies of blood flow in microvessels.