Skip to main content
eScholarship
Open Access Publications from the University of California

UC San Diego

UC San Diego Previously Published Works bannerUC San Diego

Adhesion strength and contractility enable metastatic cells to become adurotactic.

  • Author(s): Yeoman, Benjamin;
  • Shatkin, Gabriel;
  • Beri, Pranjali;
  • Banisadr, Afsheen;
  • Katira, Parag;
  • Engler, Adam J
  • et al.
Abstract

Significant changes in cell stiffness, contractility, and adhesion, i.e., mechanotype, are observed during a variety of biological processes. Whether cell mechanics merely change as a side effect of or driver for biological processes is still unclear. Here, we sort genotypically similar metastatic cancer cells into strongly adherent (SA) versus weakly adherent (WA) phenotypes to study how contractility and adhesion differences alter the ability of cells to sense and respond to gradients in material stiffness. We observe that SA cells migrate up a stiffness gradient, or durotax, while WA cells largely ignore the gradient, i.e., adurotax. Biophysical modeling and experimental validation suggest that differences in cell migration and durotaxis between weakly and strongly adherent cells are driven by differences in intra-cellular actomyosin activity. These results provide a direct relationship between cell phenotype and durotaxis and suggest how, unlike other senescent cells, metastatic cancer cells navigate against stiffness gradients.

Many UC-authored scholarly publications are freely available on this site because of the UC's open access policies. Let us know how this access is important for you.

Main Content
For improved accessibility of PDF content, download the file to your device.
Current View