Seminar: Feeling your way around: The effect of the membrane on protein organization in cell adhesion

Who: Henning Stumpf

Where: 121.1.002 Senate

When: Friday 7th December 2018, 3pm.


In embryogenesis, vertebrate cells assemble into organized tissues. In metastatic cancer, cells spreading in the circulatory system build cell-cell contacts with the surrounding tissue to establish new tumours. At the root of these life-forming or life-threatening biological phenomena is cell adhesion, the binding of a biological cell to other cells or to the extracellular matrix. One fundamental question is naturally: What factors control or govern cell adhesion? A new realization has emerged during the past two decades that physical mechanisms, promoted by the cell membrane, play an unavoidable, yet not fully understood role. Although these physical elements, namely membrane fluctuations and ability to change shape, do not at all depend on any specific proteins, they can have a major impact on the protein-mediated adhesion, and can be viewed as mechanism that controls the binding affinity to the cell-adhesion molecules. This talk will show how one can study these mechanisms in mimetic models both experimentally and theoretically.

Another seminar in the Snot to Tissue series.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s