This conference will cover the fundamentals, recent advances and emerging issues related to mechanobiology. It will provide a unique opportunity to advance knowledge and understanding in the area of force-sensing in biology. This field intrinsically implies interdisciplinary approaches combining biology with physics, optics and computer modeling. Moreover, mechanobiology is being increasingly appreciated as being of primary importance in a plethora of biological processes, including development and cancer.

How living cells are able to sense their environment and adequately respond in terms of shape, migration, proliferation, differentiation, and survival remains one of the most fascinating issues in cell biology. This is particularly obvious in the context of embryonic development, where the complex architectural multi-scale organization of tissues is elaborated. Conversely, tumor evolution and metastasis is associated to dysfunctions of cell adhesion that frequently lead to the loss of tissue homeostasis. Thus, numerous and various biological processes (e.g. morphogenesis, tissue repair, and cancer invasion) are governed by the response of mechanical signals and their conversion into biochemical ones. Several general features emerge from these descriptions that seem to be of a very universal nature. During this conference, we propose to cover a large spectrum of these aspects. In particular, the conference will provide an overview of the mechanosensitive signaling pathways at the level of single cell and tissues, with a detailed description of the original experimental methods commonly used in this field, as well as including presentation of the necessary theoretical approaches in order to understand and model force generation and propagation in active biological matter.