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Department of Mathematical Sciences

Seminar Archives

On this page you can find information about seminars in this and previous academic years, where available on the database.

Biomathematics Seminar: The physics of Tissue dynamics

Presented by Prof. Jacques Prost, Curie Institute

14 February 2012 14:00 in CM 105

After introducing the notion of homeostatic pressure, I will first show that when two tissues compete for space, in the absence of chemical signaling, the one, which has the largest homeostatic pressure, always win. I will then show that in order for a micro-tumor to grow it must exceed a critical radius and calculate the probability for a tumor to exceed that radius. This explains the observation of the “metastatic inefficiency”. I will subsequently introduce dynamical equations, which exhibit fluid like behavior on time scales long compared to duplication and apoptosis times, in the vicinity of homeostatic conditions. These equations include noise terms due to the stochasticity of cell division and apoptosis: I will discuss some consequences of the presence of these noise terms. Then I will introduce a two-component theory keeping track of the interstitial fluid. It allows us to make a clear distinction between the stress acting on cells and the interstitial fluid pressure and to discuss the influence of gravity. At last, I will show how our theory can reproduce all structures observed in intestinal villi and discuss the stability of thick epithelia.

M. Basan, T. Risler , JF Joanny, X Sastre-Garau, J Prost, Homeostatic competition drives tumor growth and metastasis nucleation HFSP Journal (2009). J. Ranft, M. Basan, J. Elgeti, J.F. Joanny, J. Prost, F. Julicher, PNAS Vol 107, 49, pp 20863-20868 (

Contact christopher.prior@durham.ac.uk for more information