Physics of liquid crystals in cell biology



Doostmohammadi A, Ladoux B



Trends Cell Biol.

2021 Oct 27


Various forms of liquid crystalline order, including nematic, smectic, and chiral features, have been established in cytoskeletal constructs in vitro and in subcellular filaments in vivo.
Nematic ordering and topological defects are being identified at an unprecedented speed in tissues of various cell types.
Topological defects are emerging as hotspots of mechanotransduction and organisation centres for cellular flows in tissues.
Topological design through prepatterned surfaces and geometric constraints is appearing as a promising tool for exploiting physics of liquid crystals for guiding cellular self-organisation.