Research at the MBI

At the Mechanobiology Institute we are exploring the effects of structural micro-environments and force-induced deformations on molecules, cells and tissues in several different contexts, including the differentiation of stem cells and cancer cell pathology. The field of mechanobiology arose from the cross-roads of multiple disciplines including; cell and molecular biology, engineering, physics and computer science. New technologies such as high resolution time-lapse microscopy and micro-scale devices have vastly enhanced the study of mechanobiology, by enabling the description of complex functions at the sub-micrometer level. Learn more about research at the MBI.

Latest publications

Remodeling of adhesion and modulation of mechanical tensile forces during apoptosis in Drosophila epithelium. Development, November 2016

By Sruthi Jagannathan | Published November 25th, 2016

By Xiang Teng1,2, Lei Qin2, Roland Le Borgne3,4, Yusuke Toyama5,2,6 Development. November 2016. 144(1). 95-105. doi: 10.1242/dev.139865. Abstract Apoptosis is a mechanism of eliminating damaged or unnecessary cells during development and tissue homeostasis. During apoptosis within a tissue, the adhesions between dying and neighboring non-dying cells need to be remodeled so that the apoptotic cell is expelled….

Extracting Microtubule Networks from Superresolution Single-Molecule Localization Microscopy Data. Molecular Biology of the Cell, November 2016

By Sruthi Jagannathan | Published November 10th, 2016

By Zhen Zhang1, Yukako Nishimura1, and Pakorn Kanchanawong2,3 Molecular Biology of the Cell. November 2016. 28(2). 333-345. doi: 10.1091/mbc.E16-06-0421. Abstract Microtubule filaments form ubiquitous networks that specify spatial organization in cells. However, quantitative analysis of the microtubule networks is hampered by their complex architecture, limiting insights into the interplay between their organization and cellular functions. Although superresolution…

Emergence of microfluidic wearable technologies. Lab on a Chip, 2016.

By Sruthi Jagannathan | Published September 28th, 2016

By Joo Chuan Yeo1, Kenry1 and Chwee Teck Lim2 Lab on a Chip. September 2016. Epub ahead of print. Abstract There has been an intense interest in the development of wearable technologies, arising from increasing demands in the areas of fitness and healthcare. While still at an early stage, incorporating microfluidics in wearable technologies has enormous…

To ∼P or Not to ∼P? Non-canonical Activation by Two-Component Response Regulators. Molecular Microbiology, 2016.

By Sruthi Jagannathan | Published September 22nd, 2016

By Stuti K Desai1, Linda J Kenney2,3,4. Molecular Microbiology. September 2016. doi: 10.1111/mmi.13532. Epub ahead of print. Abstract Bacteria sense and respond to their environment through the use of two-component regulatory systems. The ability to adapt to a wide range of environmental stresses is directly related to the number of two-component systems an organism possesses. Recent advances…

A Reversible Association between Smc Coiled Coils Is Regulated by Lysine Acetylation and Is Required for Cohesin Association with the DNA. Molecular Cell, 2016.

By Sruthi Jagannathan | Published September 15th, 2016

By Irina Kulemzina1, Keven Ang2, Xiaodan Zhao3, Jun-Thing Teh2, Vikash Verma4, Sasikala Suranthran2, Alap P. Chavda2, Roland G. Huber2, Birgit Eisenhaber2, Frank Eisenhaber5, Jie Yan6, Dmitri Ivanov7.  Molecular Cell. September 2016. 63(6). 1044-1054. doi: 10.1016/j.molcel.2016.08.008. Abstract Cohesin is a ring-shaped protein complex that is capable of embracing DNA. Most of the ring circumference is comprised of the…

Sustained α-catenin Activation at E-cadherin Junctions in the Absence of Mechanical Force. Biophysical Journal, 2016.

By Sruthi Jagannathan | Published September 6th, 2016

By Kabir H. Biswas1, Kevin L. Hartman2, Ronen Zaidel-Bar3, Jay T. Groves4.  Biophysical Journal. September 2016. 111(5). 1044-1052. doi: 10.1016/j.bpj.2016.06.027. Abstract Mechanotransduction at E-cadherin junctions has been postulated to be mediated in part by a force-dependent conformational activation of α-catenin. Activation of α-catenin allows it to interact with vinculin in addition to F-actin, resulting in a strengthening…

Heralding a new paradigm in 3D tumor modeling. Biomaterials, 2016.

By Sruthi Jagannathan | Published September 2nd, 2016

By Eliza L.S. Fong1, Daniel A. Harrington2, Mary C. Farach-Carson3, Hanry Yu4 Biomaterials. September 2016. 108. 197-213. doi: 10.1016/j.biomaterials.2016.08.052. Abstract Numerous studies to date have contributed to a paradigm shift in modeling cancer, moving from the traditional two-dimensional culture system to three-dimensional (3D) culture systems for cancer cell culture. This led to the inception of tumor engineering,…

Single-cell profiling approaches to probing tumor heterogeneity. International Journal of Cancer, July 2016.

By Sruthi Jagannathan | Published July 15th, 2016

By Bee Luan Khoo1,2, Parthiv Kant Chaudhuri1, Naveen Ramalingam3, Daniel Shao Weng Tan4,5, Chwee Teck Lim1,2,6, and Majid Ebrahimi Warkiani2,7 International Journal of Cancer. July 2016. 139(2). 243-155. doi: 10.1002/ijc.30006. Abstract Tumor heterogeneity is a major hindrance in cancer classification, diagnosis and treatment. Recent technological advances have begun to reveal the true extent of its heterogeneity. Single-cell…

Cooperative Vinculin Binding to Talin Mapped by Time-Resolved Super Resolution Microscopy. Nano Letters, July 2016.

By Sruthi Jagannathan | Published July 13th, 2016

By Xian Hu1, Chaoran Jing2, Xiaochun Xu1, Naotaka Nakazawa1, Virginia W. Cornish2, Felix M. Margadant1, and Michael P. Sheetz1,3 Nano Letters. July 2016. 16(7). 4062-4068. doi: 10.1021/acs.nanolett.6b00650. Abstract The dimeric focal adhesion protein talin contains up to 22 cryptic vinculin binding sites that are exposed by unfolding. Using a novel method to monitor the in situ dynamics…

The mechanical response of talin. Nature Communications, 2016.

By Sruthi Jagannathan | Published July 7th, 2016

By Mingxi Yao1, Benjamin T. Goult2, Benjamin Klapholz3,4, Xian Hu1, Christopher P. Toseland2, Yingjian Guo1, Peiwen Cong1, Michael P. Sheetz1,5 & Jie Yan1,6,7. Nature Communications. July 2016. 7: 11966. doi: 10.1038/ncomms11966. Abstract Talin, a force-bearing cytoplasmic adapter essential for integrin-mediated cell adhesion, links the actin cytoskeleton to integrin-based cell-extracellular matrix adhesions at the plasma membrane. Its…