Simon Gsell

Computational modeling of the interplay between cell differentiation and
mechanics in embryoids

Team: Pierre-François Lenne (IBDM) - Matthias Merkel (CPT)

His background

2013 - 2016 | Postdoc -Aix-Marseille Université, Numerical simulation and physical analysis of mucociliary transport

2013 - 2016 | PhD - Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse

2013 | Master degree - Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse. Master DET, speciality: environmental fluid dynamics

2010 - 2013 | Engineering degree - Institut National Polytechnique de Toulouse. ENSEEIHT, hydraulics and fluid dynamics, specialty: computation fluid dynamics (CFD)

2008 - 2010 | Preparatory classes - Institut National Polytechnique de Grenoble. CPP, intensive undergrauate courses in physics and mathematics

About his postdoctoral project

Multi-cellular morphogenesis crucially relies on the ability of cells to self-organize across multiple length scales to achieve reproducible tissue-scale behavior. A recent tool to study multi-cellular self-organization in vitro are embryoid bodies, which are 3D aggregates of differentiating stem cells [1]. They provide new perspectives to identify the fundamental biochemical and biomechanical principles guiding early embryonic development. However, new theoretical and computational models are needed to decipher how cellular interactions can generate whole embryoid behavior. For instance, embryoids have been observed to display differentiation and spatial separation of the initial stem cell population into several sub populations, accompanied by an anisotropic deformation of the whole embryoid [2]. This project aims at developing new computational models for embryoids based on hydrodynamic descriptions for active matter [3]. This will allow us to better understand how cell differentiation and tissue mechanics are coordinated during development.

[1] Simunovic and Brivanlou, Embryoids, organoids and gastruloids: new
approaches to understanding embryogenesis, 2017, Development,
[2] Beccari et al., Multi-axial self-organization properties of mouse
embryonic stem cells into gastruloids, 2018, Nature,
[3] Marchetti et al., Hydrodynamics of soft active matter, 2013, Reviews
of Modern Physics,
[4] Tiribocchi et al., Active Model H: Scalar Active Matter in a
Momentum-Conserving Fluid, 2015, Physical Review Letters,