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Particles and Fields

EPJ E - Giraffes are living proof that cells’ pressure matters

brain tumour
© bourbon numérik/Fotolia.com

A model that describes dividing cells within human tissues from the perspective of physicists could help further the understanding of cancer growth.

Physicists from the Curie Institute, France, explored the relative impact of the mechanical pressure induced by dividing cells in biological tissues. This approach complements traditional studies on genetic and biochemical signalling mechanisms to explain experimental observations of how biological tissues evolve. This work, recently published in EPJE, could have significant implications for the understanding of cancer growth.


EPJ E - Modelling the demise of migrating brain tumour cells

© Sebastian Kaulitzki/iStockphoto

Evolution of brain tumour cells under treatment reveal that it is the peripheral tumour cells that need to be targeted

An Israeli physicist has developed a theoretical model to simulate the evolution of highly proliferating brain tumour core cells subjected to treatment by alternating radio frequency electric field. The research, by Alexander Iomin from the Israel Institute of Technology Technion in Haifa, has just been published in EPJE. In another model, the author examines the possibility of enhancing the level of treatment by targeting the outer area of the tumour.


EPJ E - Make or break for cellular tissues

Models developed to study liquids are used to investigate the mechanics of cellular tissues, which could further our understanding of embryonic development and cancer.

In a study just published in EPJE, French physicists from the Curie Institute in Paris have demonstrated that the behaviour of a thin layer of cells in contact with an unfavourable substrate is akin to that of thin fluid or elastic films. Understanding the mechanism by which a thin layer of cells splits into disjointed patches, thus breaking the layer’s structural integrity, bears great significance because the human tissue, or epithelium, covering organs can only fulfil its role if there are no holes or gaps between the cells.


EPJ E - Electric charge disorder: A key to biological order?

Strong attraction that arises between biological objects with random patches of electric charge on an otherwise neutral surface may partly explain pattern recognition in biology.

Theoretical physicist Ali Naji from the IPM in Tehran and the University of Cambridge, UK, and his colleagues have shown how small random patches of disordered, frozen electric charges can make a difference when they are scattered on surfaces that are overall neutral. These charges induce a twisting force that is strong enough to be felt as far as nanometers or even micrometers away. These results, just published in EPJE, could help to understand phenomena that occurr on surfaces such as those of large biological molecules.


EPJ E - Study on swirls to optimise contacts between fluids

Model gives clues on how to optimize homogeneous feeding of cells in suspension from a liquid nutriments supply in a bioreactor.

Physicists who have studied the mixing between two incompatible fluids have found that it is possible to control the undercurrents of one circulating fluid to optimise its exposure to the other. This work, which has just been published in EPJE, was performed by Jorge Peixinho from CNRS at Le Havre University, France, and his colleagues from the Benjamin Levich Institute, City University of New York, USA.


Jean Francois Joanny awarded the 2012 Gentner-Kastler prize

The German Physical Society (DPG) and the French Physical Society (SFP) will present the 2012 Gentner-Kastler award to Professor Jean Francois Joanny of the Institut Curie, France. The former Editor in Chief and current External Advisor of EPJ E is nominated for his extraordinary contributions to the theory of soft matter, particularly for his work in polymer physics and biological physics. The prize will be presented March 29, 2012, during the Meeting of the German Physical Society in Berlin.

The Gentner-Kastler prize is awarded jointly by the German Physical Society for works in physics done alternatively in Germany or France.

EPJ E - Cosmology in a petri dish

To understand long-range interactions between particles at the micrometric scale, researchers utilize methods which are used to study the formation of our universe.

Scientists have found that micron-size particles which are trapped at fluid interfaces exhibit a collective dynamic that is subject to seemingly unrelated governing laws. These laws show a smooth transitioning from long-ranged cosmological-style gravitational attraction down to short-range attractive and repulsive forces. The study by Johannes Bleibel from the Max Planck Institute for Intelligent Systems in Stuttgart, Germany, and his colleagues has just been published in the journal EPJE.


EPJ E - How to build doughnuts with Lego blocks

Controlling forces between oppositely charged polymers opens a new route towards creating vectors for gene therapy

Scientists have uncovered how nature minimises energy costs in rings of liquids with an internal nanostructure made of two chemically discordant polymers joined with strong bonds, or di-blocks, deposited on a silicon surface, in an article published in EPJE.


EPJ E - The art of stabilising entangled spaghetti-like materials

Controlling forces between oppositely charged polymers opens a new route towards creating vectors for gene therapy

Gene therapy can only be effective if delivered by a stable complex molecule. Now, scientists have determined the conditions that would stabilise complex molecular structures that are subject to inherent attractions and repulsions triggered by electric charges at the surfaces of the molecules, in a study published in EPJE, by Valentina Mengarelli and her colleagues from the Solid State Physics Laboratory at the Paris-Sud University in Orsay, France, in collaboration with Paris 7 and Evry Universities scientists.


EPJ E - How biological capsules respond under stress

Innovative high-precision measuring tool to assess the bending elasticity of liposomes

Cosmetics and pharmaceutical drug delivery systems could be improved thanks to a new method developed to precisely measure the capability of capsule-like biological membranes to change shape under external stress. This work is outlined in a study published in EPJE by Philippe Méléard and Tanja Pott from the Rennes-based Institute of Chemical Sciences at the European University of Brittany and their colleagues from the Center for Biomembrane Physics at the University of Southern Denmark in Odense.


G. Dissertori, J. Monroe, D. J. Schwarz, K. Skenderis and G. Zanderighi

We are grateful to the Editor, to the Referee for careful reading of the manuscript, for the interesting and useful remarks, which allow us to improve the text and clarify some of the results.

Evgenij Martynov (Bogolyubov Institute for Theoretical Physics, Kiev, Ukraine) and Basarab Nicolescu (Babes-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca, Romania)

ISSN: 1434-6052 (Electronic Edition)

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