Effects of cytoskeletal disruption on transport, structure, and rheology within mammalian cells

Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Ángeles, California, United States
Physics of Fluids (Impact Factor: 2.03). 10/2007; 19(10):103102. DOI: 10.1063/1.2795130
Source: PubMed


Quantification of cellular responses to stimuli is challenging. Cells respond to changing external conditions through internal structural and compositional and functional modifications, thereby altering their transport and mechanical properties. By properly interpreting particle-tracking microrheology, we evaluate the response of live cells to cytoskeletal disruption mediated by the drug nocodazole. Prior to administering the drug, the particles exhibit an apparently diffusive behavior that is actually a combination of temporally heterogeneous ballistic and caged motion. Selectively depolymerizing microtubules with the drug causes actively crawling cells to halt, providing a means for assessing drug efficacy, and making the caged motion of the probes readily apparent.

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