Physical modeling of non-equilibrium processes in biological systems

Transport, Aggregation and Molecular cooperativity

Funding period 2017-2020



SFB1027 Summer Camp 2017

Wed, 07/06/2017 - 09:00 to Fri, 09/06/2017 - 15:15
Tagungshotel Hohenwart Forum, Pforzheim


This years SummerCamp for Junior Scientists takes place in the Tagungshotel Hohenwart Forum, Pforzheim

Registration is available here.

Places are limited to 30 and will be allocated after “first come, first serve” principle.


Instructions for Talks & Posters

Per funded position within the SFB, the organizers have allotted 30 min time slots including 8-10 min discussion time. Depending on the number of participants, the time slots will be adjusted accordingly. Every participant is expected to contribute to the summer camp with either a poster or a talk.


Be aware that you talk to an interdisciplinary audience and dedicate time for a nice introduction and motivation of your project: What are you up to clarify? Duration: 25-30 min, incuding 8-10 min discussion time (might be modified depending on number of talks)

Special events

1) Posterpresentation (formerly known as the Posterkaraoke)

This is a social, interactive, cool, scientific kind of poetry slam. Here's the rules: Every poster author will team up with another author (randomly assigned). Every team will have time to get familiar with each other's poster. The next day, you'll introduce your team mate's poster to the audience, equipped with only a paper and a pen and 2 min time. Use body language, mimics,… whatever, to picture the scientific content!

You'll see: it's great fun and you'll never forget your team mate's and many other projects!


2) Team event

Planned: Waldklettergarten Pforzheim


SFB Seminar

Tue, 13/06/2017 - 14:15
Campus Saarbrücken, Geb. E2 6, E04

Prof. Samuel Safran
Host: Prof. Dr. Heiko Rieger
Dpt. Materials and Interfaces, Weizman Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel

Mechanical synchronization of beating within and between cardiomyocytes

We present models that predict how mechanical interactions in actively beating heart cells can lead to synchronization of beating both within single cells and between nearby cells. The predictions are compared with experiments [1,2] that measure the substrate rigidity dependence of the structural registry of the sarcomeres and show how this can be mapped onto measurements of the beating strain [1, 2]. This suggests that the correlated beating of heart cells may be limited by the structural registry of the sarcomeres which in turn is regulated by their mechanical environment. Similar structural registry of myosin stacks have recently been observed [3] in stress fibers in fibroblasts and we suggest that this too may be mechanically driven.

Recent experiments [4] on synchronization of beating of two nearby cardiomyocytes have shown that a mechanical probe can “pace” a beating cell to within about twice or a quarter of its natural beating frequency. This is indicative of one way by which nearby cardiomyocytes embedded can regulate their mutual beating. We focus [5] on the synchronization of two nearby cardiomyocyte cells or a cell and a mechanical probe and show theoretically that based on their mutual deformations of the substrate (or ECM), two nearby cells can synchronize their phase and frequency in a manner that depends on their mutual orientation; the predictions are compared with the experiments [4] that show a variety of dynamical regimes. Using non-linear dynamics approaches, we predict the persistence time of cells whose beating is either spontaneous or entrained by a mechanical probe and point out the role of biological adaptation in these processes, which have yet to be experimentally explored.

[1] S. Majkut et al., Current Biology, 23, 2323 (2013).
[2] K. Dasbiswas, S. Majkut, D. Discher and S. Safran, Nature Comm.,
6, 7085 (2015).
[3] S. Hu, K. Dasbiswas,
et al., Nature Cell Biology 19, 133 (2017).
[4] I. Nitsan et al., Nature Physics,
12, 472 (2016).
[5] O. Cohen and S. A. Safran, Soft Matter,
12, 6088 (2016) and to be published.

SFB Seminar

Tue, 20/06/2017 - 14:15
Campus HOM, Hörsaal Geb. 60 (Humangenetik)

Prof. Dr. Georg Conrads
Host: Prof. Dr. Matthias Hannig
Uniklinik RWTH Aachen