Antonio Desimone

Antonio Desimone
Scuola Internazionale Superiore di Studi Avanzati di Trieste | SISSA · Applied Mathematics Group

PhD in Mechanics

About

229
Publications
21,615
Reads
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6,116
Citations
Additional affiliations
September 1998 - December 2002
Max Planck Society
Position
  • Professor (Associate)
Description
  • Leader of an independent junior research group on "Multiscale phenomena in materials" (Associate Professor)
Education
January 1989 - December 1992

Publications

Publications (229)
Article
Full-text available
Adherent cells seeded on substrates spread and evolve their morphology while simultaneously displaying motility. Phenomena such as contact guidance, viz. the alignment of cells on patterned substrates, are strongly linked to the coupling of morphological evolution with motility. Here, we employ a recently developed statistical thermodynamics framew...
Article
In the study of micro-swimmers, both artificial and biological ones, many-query problems arise naturally. Even with the use of advanced high performance computing (HPC), it is not possible to solve this kind of problems in an acceptable amount of time. Various approximations of the Stokes equation have been considered in the past to ease such compu...
Preprint
teaserEuglenoids show great promise to benefit our world; as biofuels, environmental remediators, anti-cancer agents, robotics design simulators and food nutritional agents, but the absence of reference genomes currently limit realizing these benefits. The Euglena International Network (EIN) (https://euglenanetwork.org/) aims to address these chall...
Article
Full-text available
A constitutive material law for linear viscoelasticity in the time domain is presented. It does not only allow for anisotropic elastic behavior but also for anisotropic (i.e. direction dependent) relaxation response. Under the assumption of thermo–rheological simple material behavior, the model is capable to account for direction dependent time–tem...
Conference Paper
p>Understanding and monitoring natural ecosystems is necessary for an efficient implementation of sustainable strategies to tackle climate and environmental-related challenges, such as: protect and improve the quality of air, water, and soil; safeguard species biodiversity; and effectively manage natural resources. A longstanding challenge for envi...
Article
Growing plant shoots exhibit spontaneous oscillations that Darwin observed, and termed ‘circumnutations’. Recently, they have received renewed attention for the design and optimal actuation of bioinspired robotic devices. We discuss a possible interpretation of these spontaneous oscillations as a Hopf-type bifurcation in a growing morphoelastic rod...
Preprint
Full-text available
Adherent cells seeded on substrates spread and evolve their morphology while simultaneously displaying motility. Phenomena such as contact guidance viz. the alignment of cells on patterned substrates, are strongly linked to the coupling of morphological evolution with motility. Here we employ a recently developed statistical thermodynamics framewor...
Article
Full-text available
We propose and discuss a model for flagellar mechanics in Euglena gracilis. We show that the peculiar non-planar shapes of its beating flagellum, dubbed 'spinning lasso', arise from the mechanical interactions between two of its inner components, namely, the axoneme and the paraflagellar rod. The spontaneous shape of the axoneme and the resting sha...
Article
Full-text available
We present a three-dimensional morphoelastic rod model capable to describe the morphogenesis of growing plant shoots driven by differential growth. We discuss the evolution laws for endogenous oscillators, straightening mechanisms, and reorientations to directional cues, such as gravitropic reactions governed by the avalanche dynamics of statoliths...
Preprint
Full-text available
While it is commonly observed that the shape dynamics of mammalian cells can undergo large random fluctuations, theoretical models aiming at capturing cell mechanics often focus on the deterministic part of the motion. In this paper, we present a framework that couples an active gel model of the cell mechanical scaffold with the complex cell metabo...
Article
Full-text available
Nature and technology often adopt structures that can be described as tubular helical assemblies. However, the role and mechanisms of these structures remain elusive. In this paper, we study the mechanical response under compression and extension of a tubular assembly composed of 8 helical Kirchhoff rods, arranged in pairs with opposite chirality a...
Article
Euglena gracilis is a unicellular organism that swims by beating a single anterior flagellum. We study the nonplanar waveforms spanned by the flagellum during a swimming stroke and the three-dimensional flows that they generate in the surrounding fluid. Starting from a small set of time-indexed images obtained by optical microscopy on a swimming Eu...
Article
Full-text available
Mechanical instabilities can be exploited to design innovative structures, able to change their shape in the presence of external stimuli. In this work, we derive a mathematical model of an elastic beam subjected to an axial force and constrained to smoothly slide along a rigid support, where the distance between the rod midline and the constraint...
Preprint
Mechanical instabilities can be exploited to design innovative structures, able to change their shape in the presence of external stimuli. In this work, we derive a mathematical model of an elastic beam subjected to an axial force and constrained to smoothly slide along a rigid support, where the distance between the rod midline and the constraint...
Article
Full-text available
Many active materials used in shape‐morphing respond to an external stimulus by stretching or contracting along a director field. The programming of such actuators remains complex because of the single degree of freedom (the orientation) in local actuation. Here, texturing this field in zigzag patterns is shown to provide an extended family of biax...
Article
Full-text available
Many active materials used in shape‐morphing are capable of stretching or contracting along a director field. In article number 2004515, Benoît Roman and co‐workers show that texturing this field in zigzag patterns provides an extended family of deformation, opening a larger parameter space for shape control. This concept can be applied to any anis...
Preprint
Full-text available
Euglena gracilis is a unicellular organism that swims by beating a single anterior flagellum. We study the nonplanar waveforms spanned by the flagellum during a swimming stroke, and the three-dimensional flows that they generate in the surrounding fluid. Starting from a small set of time-indexed images obtained by optical microscopy on a swimming E...
Preprint
Full-text available
A bstract We present a three-dimensional morphoelastic rod model capable to describe the morphogenesis of growing plant shoots, as driven by differential growth at the tip. We discuss the evolution laws for endogenous oscillators, straightening mechanisms and reorientations to directional cues, such as phototropic responses to a far light source an...
Chapter
Mathematical modeling and quantitative study of biological motility is producing new biophysical insight and opportunities for discoveries at the level of both fundamental science and technology. One example is the elucidation of how complex behavior of simple organisms emerges from specific (and sophisticated) body architectures, and how this is a...
Preprint
Full-text available
In the study of micro-swimmers, both artificial and biological ones, many-query problems arise naturally. Even with the use of advanced high performance computing (HPC), it is not possible to solve this kind of problems in an acceptable amount of time. Various approximations of the Stokes equation have been considered in the past to ease such compu...
Preprint
Full-text available
Some euglenids, a family of aquatic unicellular organisms, can develop highly concerted, large-amplitude peristaltic body deformations. This remarkable behaviour has been known for centuries. Yet, its function remains controversial, and is even viewed as a functionless ancestral vestige. Here, by examining swimming Euglena gracilis in environments...
Preprint
This paper deals with a concept for a reconfigurable structure bio-inspired by the cell wall architecture of euglenids, a family of unicellular protists, and based on the relative sliding of adjacent strips. Uniform sliding turns a cylinder resulting from the assembly of straight and parallel strips into a cylinder of smaller height and larger radi...
Article
Full-text available
Hydrothermal growth of ZnO nanorods has been widely used for the development of tactile sensors, with the aid of ZnO seed layers, favoring the growth of dense and vertically aligned nanorods. However, seed layers represent an additional fabrication step in the sensor design. In this study, a seedless hydrothermal growth of ZnO nanorods was carried...
Article
Full-text available
Activity and autonomous motion are fundamental in living and engineering systems. This has stimulated the new field of ‘active matter’ in recent years, which focuses on the physical aspects of propulsion mechanisms, and on motility-induced emergent collective behavior of a larger number of identical agents. The scale of agents ranges from nanomotor...
Article
Full-text available
Polymer gel plates may be programmed to morph into three-dimensional configurations upon swelling. An effective strategy to control such shape transformations consists in patterning the in-plane cross-linking density of the polymer network to realize non-homogeneous swelling. In general, one needs to solve an inverse problem to determine the shear...
Article
Full-text available
Liquid crystal elastomers (LCEs) are an attractive platform for dynamic shape‐morphing due to their ability to rapidly undergo large deformations. While recent work has focused on patterning the director orientation field to achieve desired target shapes, this strategy cannot be generalized to material systems where high‐resolution surface alignmen...
Article
In this work, we study the mechanics of metamaterial sheets inspired by the pellicle of Euglenids. They are composed of interlocking elastic rods which can freely slide along their edges. We characterize the kinematics and the mechanics of these structures using the special Cosserat theory of rods and by assuming axisymmetric deformations of the tu...
Preprint
Full-text available
We propose and discuss a model for flagellar mechanics in Euglena gracilis. We show that the peculiar non-planar shapes of its beating flagellum, dubbed "spinning lasso", arise from the mechanical interactions between two of its inner components, namely, the axoneme and the paraflagellar rod. The spontaneous shape of the axoneme and the resting sha...
Preprint
Full-text available
In this work, we study the mechanics of metamaterial sheets inspired by the pellicle of Euglenids. They are composed of interlocking elastic rods which can freely slide along their edges. We characterize the kinematics and the mechanics of these structures using the special Cosserat theory of rods and by assuming axisymmetric deformations of the tu...
Article
Mathematical modeling and quantitative study of biological motility (in particular, of motility at microscopic scales) is producing new biophysical insight and is offering opportunities for new discoveries at the level of both fundamental science and technology. These range from the explanation of how complex behavior at the level of a single organ...
Book
This book presents the state of the art in mathematical research on modelling the mechanics of biological systems – a science at the intersection between biology, mechanics and mathematics known as mechanobiology. The book gathers comprehensive surveys of the most significant areas of mechanobiology: cell motility and locomotion by shape control (A...
Article
Full-text available
We discuss some recent results on biological and bio-inspired morphing, and use them to identify promising research directions for the future. In particular, we consider issues related to morphing at microscopic scales inspired by unicellular organisms. We focus on broad conceptual principles and, in particular, on morphing approaches based on the...
Article
One of the most remarkable differences between classical engineering materials and living matter is the ability of the latter to grow and remodel in response to diverse stimuli. The mechanical behaviour of living matter is governed not only by an elastic or viscoelastic response to loading on short time scales up to several minutes, but also by oft...
Article
Full-text available
Objective: The quest for an intuitive and physiologically appropriate human-machine interface for the control of dexterous prostheses is far from being completed. To control a hand prosthesis, a possible approach could consist in using information related to the displacement of forearm muscles of an amputee during contraction. We recently proposed...
Article
The effect of elastic deformations induced by gravity loading on the active circumnutation movements of growing plant shoots is investigated. We consider first a discrete model (a gravitropic spring-pendulum system) and then a continuous rod model which is analyzed both analytically (under the assumption of small deformations) and numerically (in t...
Article
In a seminal paper published in 1951, Taylor studied the interactions between a viscous fluid and an immersed flat sheet which is subjected to a travelling wave of transversal displacement. The net reaction of the fluid over the sheet turned out to be a force in the direction of the wave phase-speed. This effect is a key mechanism for the swimming...
Article
Full-text available
Some euglenids, a family of aquatic unicellular organisms, can develop highly concerted, large-amplitude peristaltic body deformations. This remarkable behaviour has been known for centuries. Yet, its function remains controversial, and is even viewed as a functionless ancestral vestige. Here, by examining swimming Euglena gracilis in environments...
Article
Full-text available
Micron-scale swimmers move in the realm of negligible inertia, dominated by viscous drag forces. Actuation of artificial micro-robotic swimmers for various biomedical applications is inspired by natural propulsion mechanisms of swimming microorganisms such as bacteria and sperm cells, which perform periodic strokes of waving a slender tail. Finding...
Article
Full-text available
Contact guidance—the widely known phenomenon of cell alignment induced by anisotropic environmental features—is an essential step in the organization of adherent cells, but the mechanisms by which cells achieve this orientational ordering remain unclear. Here, we seeded myofibroblasts on substrates micropatterned with stripes of fibronectin and obs...
Preprint
Full-text available
Contact guidance- the widely-known phenomenon of cell alignment induced by anisotropic environmental features is an essential step in the organization of adherent cells, but the mechanisms by which cells achieve this orientational ordering remain unclear. Here we seeded myofibroblasts on substrates micropatterned with stripes of fibronectin and obs...
Article
We discuss self-folding of a thin sheet by using patterned hydrogel bilayers, which act as hinges connecting flat faces. Folding is actuated by heterogeneous swelling due to different cross-linking densities of the polymer network in the two layers. Our analysis is based on a dimensionally reduced plate model, obtained by applying a recently develo...
Article
Full-text available
This paper deals with a concept for a reconfigurable structure bio-inspired by the cell wall architecture of euglenids, a family of unicellular protists, and based on the relative sliding of adjacent strips. Uniform sliding turns a cylinder resulting from the assembly of straight and parallel strips into a cylinder of smaller height and larger radi...
Article
Full-text available
Peristalsis, i.e., a motion pattern arising from the propagation of muscle contraction and expansion waves along the body, is a common locomotion strategy for limbless animals. Mimicking peristalsis in bio-inspired robots has attracted considerable attention in the literature. It has recently been observed that maximal velocity in a metameric earth...
Article
Basement membranes (BMs) are thin layers of condensed extracellular matrix proteins serving as permeability filters, cellular anchoring sites, and barriers against cancer cell invasion. It is believed that their biomechanical properties play a crucial role in determining cellular behavior and response, especially in mechanically active tissues like...
Article
Full-text available
Some recent results on biological and bio-inspired swimming at microscopic scales are reviewed, and used to identify promising research directions for the future. We focus on broad conceptual principles such as looping in the space of shapes, loss of controllability of systems in which shape is only partially controlled, and steering by modulating...
Article
Full-text available
Interest in the design of bioinspired robotic microswimmers is growing rapidly, motivated by the spectacular capabilities of their unicellular biological templates. Predicting the swimming speed and efficiency of such devices in a reliable way is essential for their rational design, and to optimize their performance. The hydrodynamic simulations ne...
Article
Full-text available
The flagellar swimming of euglenids, which are propelled by a single anterior flagellum, is characterized by a generalized helical motion. The 3D nature of this swimming motion, which lacks some of the symmetries enjoyed by more common model systems, and the complex flagellar beating shapes that power it make its quantitative description challengin...
Article
We derive a multiphysics model that accounts for network elasticity with spontaneous strains, swelling and nematic interactions in liquid crystal gels (LCGs). We discuss the coupling among the various physical mechanisms, with particular reference to the effects of nematic interactions on chemical equilibrium and that of swelling on the nematic-iso...
Article
Full-text available
A constitutive material law for linear thermo-viscoelasticity in the time domain is presented. The time-dependent relaxation formulation is given for full anisotropy, i.e., both the elastic and the viscous properties are anisotropic. Thereby, each element of the relaxation tensor is described by its own and independent Prony series expansion. Excee...
Article
Full-text available
We discuss spontaneously bent configurations of pre-stretched bilayer sheets that can be obtained by tuning the pre-stretches in the two layers. The two-dimensional nonlinear plate model we use for this purpose is an adaptation of the one recently obtained for thin sheets of nematic elastomers, by means of a rigorous dimensional reduction argument...
Article
Full-text available
An elastic bilayer, consisting of an equibiaxially pre-stretched sheet bonded to a stress-free one, spontaneously morphs into curved shapes in the absence of external loads or constraints. Using experiments and numerical simulations, we explore the role of geometry for square and rectangular samples in determining the equilibrium shape of the syste...