Precise Tuning and Characterization of Viscoelastic Interfaces for the Study of Early Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition Behaviors

Alice Chinghsuan Chang, Koichiro Uto, Shimaa A. Abdellatef, Jun Nakanishi*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

There is growing evidence that cellular functions are regulated by the viscoelastic nature of surrounding matrices. This study aimed to investigate the impact of interfacial viscoelasticity on adhesion and epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) behaviors of epithelial cells. The interfacial viscoelasticity was manipulated using spin-coated thin films composed of copolymers of ϵ-caprolactone and d,l-lactide photo-cross-linked with benzophenone, whose mechanical properties were characterized using atomic force microscopy and a rheometer. The critical range for the morphological transition of epithelial Madin-Darby canine kidney (MDCK) cells was of the order of 102 ms relaxation time, which was 1-2 orders of magnitude smaller than the relaxation times reported (10-102 s). An analysis of strain rate-dependent viscoelastic properties revealed that the difference was caused by the different strain rate/frequency used for the mechanical characterization of the interface and bulk. Furthermore, decoupling of the interfacial viscous and elastic terms demonstrated that E/N-cadherin expression levels were regulated differently by interfacial relaxation and elasticity. These results confirm the significance of precise manipulation and characterization of interfacial viscoelasticity in mechanobiology studies on EMT progression.

Original languageEnglish
JournalLangmuir
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Materials Science(all)
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces and Interfaces
  • Spectroscopy
  • Electrochemistry

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