Multiscale Modeling of Cell Wall Mechanics and Growth in Walled Cells (15w5050)


(Université de Montréal)

(Stanford University)


The Banff International Research Station will host the "Multiscale Modeling of Cell Wall Mechanics and Growth in Walled Cells" workshop from October 18th to October 23rd, 2015.

The basic building block of living organisms is the cell. Cells interact, build tissues, and communicate, and their shape affects all of these behaviours. All of these functions are also regulated by complex chemical pathways, but cellular behaviour has to obey physical laws. Therefore it is important to understand the mechanical underpinnings of cellular structure and behaviour. A wide variety of organisms require a rigid wall surrounding the cells for growth, including the differentiation of cells within a plant tissue into different shapes, the invasion of pathogenic fungi into host cells, and the swimming of bacterial cells.

Understanding the interplay between mechanical form and function in cells is therefore critically important; it may not only help us identify the causes and consequences of different forms of disease, but also design novel treatment strategies. A central challenge in biology, epitomized by the ubiquity of walled growth in different organisms, is to understand growth all the way from the actions of the individual molecules to the behaviour of cells and tissues. To achieve such a goal will require new approaches and the integration of knowledge among several fields. This workshop will bring together scientists from different disciplines to address these issues and identify novel pathways and strategies to explore the interaction between cell mechanics and cell biology.

The Banff International Research Station for Mathematical Innovation and Discovery (BIRS) is a collaborative Canada-US-Mexico venture that provides an environment for creative interaction as well as the exchange of ideas, knowledge, and methods within the Mathematical Sciences, with related disciplines and with industry. The research station is located at The Banff Centre in Alberta and is supported by Canada's Natural Science and Engineering Research Council (NSERC), the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF), Alberta's Advanced Education and Technology, and Mexico's Consejo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología (CONACYT).