How motor proteins contract the cell cortex and form a cell division ring (2018–2023)

It is an important open problem to understand stress generation and pattern formation in the cortex of living cells. The cortex is a cross-linked filament network interspersed with molecular motor proteins underneath the membrane of living cells. We will develop a detailed physical model for motor proteins and filaments, and, based on it, derive a fluid-type mean-field mathematical model, which will facilitate numerical simulations and lead to testable predictions. The simulations will explain how the forces generated by individual motor proteins rearrange this network, generate stress and thus drive cortical flow and promote the alignment of filaments into a constriction ring at the onset of cell division.
Grant type:
ARC Discovery Projects
  • Senior Lecturer
    School of Mathematics and Physics
    Faculty of Science
Funded by:
Australian Research Council