Emergence of collective modes and tri-dimensional structures from epithelial confinement - Deforet, M. and Hakim, V. and Yevick, H. G. and Duclos, G. and Silberzan, P.
NATURE COMMUNICATIONS 5, (2014)
Abstract : Many in vivo processes, including morphogenesis or tumour maturation,
involve small populations of cells within a spatially restricted region.
However, the basic mechanisms underlying the dynamics of confined cell
assemblies remain largely to be deciphered and would greatly benefit
from well-controlled in vitro experiments. Here we show that confluent
epithelial cells cultured on finite population-sized domains, exhibit
collective low-frequency radial displacement modes as well as stochastic
global rotation reversals. A simple mathematical model, in which cells
are described as persistent random walkers that adapt their motion to
that of their neighbours, captures the essential characteristics of
these breathing oscillations. As these epithelia mature, a
tri-dimensional peripheral cell cord develops at the domain edge by
differential extrusion, as a result of the additional degrees of freedom
of the border cells. These results demonstrate that epithelial
confinement alone can induce morphogenesis-like processes including
spontaneous collective pulsations and transition from 2D to 3D.