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A dynamic physical model of cell migration, differentiation and apoptosis in Caenorhabditis elegans


Beyer, A; Eberhard, R; Piterman, N; Hengartner, M O; Hajnal, A; Fisher, J (2012). A dynamic physical model of cell migration, differentiation and apoptosis in Caenorhabditis elegans. In: Goryanin, I I; Goryachev, A B. Advances in systems biology. New York, NY, US: Springer New York, 211-233.

Abstract

The germ line of the nematode C. elegansprovides a paradigm to study essential developmental concepts like stem cell differentiation and apoptosis. Here, we have created a computational model encompassing these developmental landmarks and the resulting movement of germ cells along the gonadal tube. We have used a technique based on molecular dynamics (MD) to model the physical movement of cells solely based on the force that arises from dividing cells. This novel way of using MD to drive the model enables calibration of simulation and experimental time. Based on this calibration, the analysis of our model shows that it is in accordance with experimental observations. In addition, the model provides insights into kinetics of molecular pathways within individual cells as well as into physical aspects like the cell density along the germ line and in local neighbourhoods of individual germ cells. In the future, the presented model can be used to test hypotheses about diverse aspects of development like stem cell division or programmed cell death. An iterative process of evolving this model and experimental testing in the model system C. eleganswill provide new insights into key developmental aspects.

The germ line of the nematode C. elegansprovides a paradigm to study essential developmental concepts like stem cell differentiation and apoptosis. Here, we have created a computational model encompassing these developmental landmarks and the resulting movement of germ cells along the gonadal tube. We have used a technique based on molecular dynamics (MD) to model the physical movement of cells solely based on the force that arises from dividing cells. This novel way of using MD to drive the model enables calibration of simulation and experimental time. Based on this calibration, the analysis of our model shows that it is in accordance with experimental observations. In addition, the model provides insights into kinetics of molecular pathways within individual cells as well as into physical aspects like the cell density along the germ line and in local neighbourhoods of individual germ cells. In the future, the presented model can be used to test hypotheses about diverse aspects of development like stem cell division or programmed cell death. An iterative process of evolving this model and experimental testing in the model system C. eleganswill provide new insights into key developmental aspects.

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2 citations in Web of Science®
2 citations in Scopus®
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Additional indexing

Item Type:Book Section, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Institute of Molecular Life Sciences
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
Language:English
Date:2012
Deposited On:10 Feb 2012 21:17
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 15:33
Publisher:Springer New York
Series Name:Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
Number:736, Pt 2
ISSN:0065-2598
ISBN:978-1-441-97209-5 (P) 978-1-441-97210-1 (eISBN)
Publisher DOI:10.1007/978-1-4419-7210-1_12
Related URLs:http://opac.nebis.ch/F/?local_base=EBI01&con_lng=GER&func=find-b&find_code=090&request=002027362
PubMed ID:22161331

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