laboratoire de physique statistique
laboratoire de physique statistique




P A R M I :

Contact gating at GHz frequency in graphene - Wilmart, Q. and Inhofer, A. and Boukhicha, M. and Yang, W. and Rosticher, M. and Morfin, P. and Garroum, N. and Feve, G. and Berroir, J. -M. and Placais, B.

Abstract : The paradigm of graphene transistors is based on the gate modulation of the channel carrier density by means of a local channel gate. This standard architecture is subject to the scaling limit of the channel length and further restrictions due to access and contact resistances impeding the device performance. We propose a novel design, overcoming these issues by implementing additional local gates underneath the contact region which allow a full control of the Klein barrier taking place at the contact edge. In particular, our work demonstrates the GHz operation of transistors driven by independent contact gates. We benchmark the standard channel and novel contact gating and report for the later dynamical transconductance levels at the state of the art. Our finding may find applications in electronics and optoelectronics whenever there is need to control independently the Fermi level and the electrostatic potential of electronic sources or to get rid of cumbersome local channel gates.
Collective chemotaxis and segregation of active bacterial colonies - Ben Amar, M.

Abstract : Still recently, bacterial fluid suspensions have motivated a lot of works, both experimental and theoretical, with the objective to understand their collective dynamics from universal and simple rules. Since some species are active, most of these works concern the strong interactions that these bacteria exert on a forced flow leading to instabilities, chaos and turbulence. Here, we investigate the self-organization of expanding bacterial colonies under chemotaxis, proliferation and eventually active-reaction. We propose a simple model to understand and quantify the physical properties of these living organisms which either give cohesion or on the contrary dispersion to the colony. Taking into account the diffusion and capture of morphogens complicates the model since it induces a bacterial density gradient coupled to bacterial density fluctuations and dynamics. Nevertheless under some specific conditions, it is possible to investigate the pattern formation as a usual viscous fingering instability. This explains the similarity and differences of patterns according to the physical bacterial suspension properties and explain the factors which favor compactness or branching.
On-Chip Quantitative Measurement of Mechanical Stresses During Cell Migration with Emulsion Droplets - Molino, D. and Quignard, S. and Gruget, C. and Pincet, F. and Chen, Y. and Piel, M. and Fattaccioli, J.

Abstract : The ability of immune cells to migrate within narrow and crowded spaces is a critical feature involved in various physiological processes from immune response to metastasis. Several in-vitro techniques have been developed so far to study the behaviour of migrating cells, the most recent being based on the fabrication of microchannels within which cells move. To address the question of the mechanical stress a cell is able to produce during the encounter of an obstacle while migrating, we developed a hybrid microchip made of parallel PDMS channels in which oil droplets are sparsely distributed and serve as deformable obstacles. We thus show that cells strongly deform droplets while passing them. Then, we show that the microdevice can be used to study the influence of drugs on migration at the population level. Finally, we describe a quantitative analysis method of the droplet deformation that allows measuring in real-time the mechanical stress exerted by a single cell. The method presented herein thus constitutes a powerful analytical tool for cell migration studies under confinement.
A specific flagellum beating mode for inducing fusion in mammalian fertilization and kinetics of sperm internalization - Ravaux, Benjamin and Garroum, Nabil and Perez, Eric and Willaime, Herve and Gourier, Christine

Abstract : The salient phases of fertilization are gamete adhesion, membrane fusion, and internalization of the spermatozoon into the oocyte but the precise timeline and the molecular, membrane and cell mechanisms underlying these highly dynamical events are far from being established. The high motility of the spermatozoa and the unpredictable location of sperm/egg fusion dramatically hinder the use of real time imaging optical techniques that should directly provide the dynamics of cell events. Using an approach based on microfluidics technology, the sperm/egg interaction zone was imaged with the best front view, and the timeline of the fertilization events was established with an unparalleled temporal accuracy from the onset of gamete contact to full sperm DNA decondensation. It reveals that a key element of the adhesion phase to initiate fusion is the oscillatory motion of the sperm head on the oocyte plasma membrane generated by a specific flagellum-beating mode. It also shows that the incorporation of the spermatozoon head is a two steps process that includes simultaneous diving, tilt, and plasma membrane degradation of the sperm head into the oocyte and subsequent DNA decondensation.
Onset of nonlinearity in a stochastic model for auto-chemotactic advancing epithelia - Ben Amar, Martine and Bianca, Carlo

Abstract : We investigate the role of auto-chemotaxis in the growth and motility of an epithelium advancing on a solid substrate. In this process, cells create their own chemoattractant allowing communications among neighbours, thus leading to a signaling pathway. As known, chemotaxis provokes the onset of cellular density gradients and spatial inhomogeneities mostly at the front, a phenomenon able to predict some features revealed in in vitro experiments. A continuous model is proposed where the coupling between the cellular proliferation, the friction on the substrate and chemotaxis is investigated. According to our results, the friction and proliferation stabilize the front whereas auto-chemotaxis is a factor of destabilization. This antagonist role induces a fingering pattern with a selected wavenumber k(0). However, in the planar front case, the translational invariance of the experimental set-up gives also a mode at k = 0 and the coupling between these two modes in the nonlinear regime is responsible for the onset of a Hopf-bifurcation. The time-dependent oscillations of patterns observed experimentally can be predicted simply in this continuous non-linear approach. Finally the effects of noise are also investigated below the instability threshold.
Morphology of melanocytic lesions in situ - Balois, Thibaut and Ben Amar, Martine

Abstract : Melanoma is a solid tumour with its own specificity from the biological and morphological viewpoint. On one hand, numerous mutations are already known affecting different pathways. They usually concern proliferation rate, apoptosis, cell senescence and cell behaviour. On the other hand, several visual criteria at the tissue level are used by physicians in order to diagnose skin lesions. Nevertheless, the mechanisms between the changes from the mutations at the cell level to the morphology exhibited at the tissue level are still not fully understood. Using physical tools, we develop a simple model. We demonstrate analytically that it contains the necessary ingredients to understand several specificities of melanoma such as the presence of microstructures inside a skin lesion or the absence of a necrotic core. We also explain the importance of senescence for growth arrest in benign skin lesions. Thanks to numerical simulations, we successfully compare this model to biological data.
Effect of wetting on capillary pumping in microchannels - Javadi, Arman and Habibi, Mehdi and Taheri, Fereshte Samadi and Moulinet, Sebastien and Bonn, Daniel

Abstract : We investigate capillary pumping in microchannels both experimentally and numerically. Putting two droplets of different sizes at the in/outlet of a microchannel, there will in general be a flow from the smaller droplet to the larger one due to the Laplace pressure difference. We show that an unusual flow from a larger droplet into a smaller one is possible by manipulating the wetting properties, notably the contact line pinning. In addition, we propose a way to actively control the flow by electrowetting.
How to construct the perfect sandcastle - Pakpour, Maryam and Habibi, Mehdi and Moller, Peder and Bonn, Daniel

Abstract : Just a bit of water enables one to turn a pile of dry sand into a spectacular sandcastle. Too much water however will destabilize the material, as is seen in landslides. Here we investigated the stability of wet sand columns to account for the maximum height of sandcastles. We find that the columns become unstable to elastic buckling under their own weight. This allows to account for the maximum height of the sand column; it is found to increase as the 2/3 power of the base radius of the column. Measuring the elastic modulus of the wet sand, we find that the optimum strength is achieved at a very low liquid volume fraction of about 1\%. Knowing the modulus we can quantitatively account for the measured sandcastle heights.