Cell Growth under Mechanical Pressure

31.01.2023 11:00 virtual Dr. Morgan Delarue, Université Toulouse
31.01.2023 11:00 , virtual Dr. Morgan Delarue, Université Toulouse

Dr. Morgan Delarue

Université Toulouse, team MILE, LAAS-CNRS, France

Host: Prof. Dr. Aránzazu del Campo

We will send you the zoom link on request.

Contact: Christine Hartmann
[email protected]
Phone: ++49 (0)681 9300 244


Cells act upon the elastic extracellular matrix and against steric constraints when growing in a spatially-limited environment. At the multicellular level, confined cell proliferation results in the emergence of a compressive, growth-induced, mechanical stress. Compressive stresses are ubiquitous to any cell population developing in confinement, such as most solid tumors or microbes, and can deeply impact cell physiology. In this talk, we will mainly be focusing on the impact of growth-induced pressure on a model organism, the budding yeast S. cerevisiae.

We observed that the growth of S. cerevisiae decreased under pressure. Using novel genetically-encoded nanoparticles (GEMs) to assess the rheological properties of a cell, we show that compressive stress alters the motion of macromolecules inside the cell, in a size-specific manner. Under compression, reactions such as protein synthesis can become diffusion-limited, globally decreasing the dynamics of biomass production, and elucidating a mechanism in which growth limitation can be attributed to modifications in the rheological properties of cells.

At the end of the talk, we will explore the possibility that the cytosolic rheological properties are partly conserved across organisms. This result can expand the observations made on S. cerevisiae to other organisms such as bacteria and mammalian cells, and point towards a universally-conserved biophysical mechanism regulating growth under pressure.

Short CV

Morgan Delarue is a biophysicist working at LAAS-CNRS in Toulouse, France. Their research lies at the interface between physics, engineering, biology and medicine, and aims at the understanding of the physiological response to compressive stress in different organisms, with a particular emphasis on cancer.