Cell transit analysis of ligand-induced stiffening of polymorphonuclear leukocytes

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A mathematical treatment of the mechanical behavior of transiently bonded polymer networks is used to interpret measurements of the pressure- induced passage of pliant cells through microporous membranes. Cell transit times are inferred to be proportional to the instantaneous shear modulus of the cell cortex, a parameter that we then relate to properties of the cortical F-actin matrix. These theoretical results are used to analyze published data on chemoattractant-induced changes of rigidity of polymorphonuclear leukocytes. We thereby rationalize previously noted, peculiar, power-law logarithmic dependences of transit time on ligand concentration. As a consequence, we are able to deduce a linear relationship between the extent of F-actin polymerization and the logarithm of the chemoattractant concentration. The latter is examined with regard to the G- protein activation that is known to occur when chemoattractants bind to receptors on the surfaces of polymorphonuclear cells.




Nossal, R. (1998). Cell transit analysis of ligand-induced stiffening of polymorphonuclear leukocytes. Biophysical Journal, 75(3), 1541–1552. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0006-3495(98)74073-1

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