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216

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November 1993 - present

## Publications

Publications (216)

We present a continuum model to describe the reorientation of an anisotropic material structure , characterized by two fiber families able to modify their orientations following different evolution dynamics. The evolution equations are derived in a thermodynamically consistent way, and passive and active contributions to the reorientation process a...

Experiments show that when a monolayer of cells cultured on an elastic substrate is subject to a cyclic stretch, cells tend to reorient either perpendicularly or at an oblique angle with respect to the main direction of the stretch. Due to stochastic effects, however, the distribution of angles achieved by the cells is broader and, experimentally,...

6 The active response of cells to mechanical cues due to their interaction with the environment 7 has been of increasing interest, since it is involved in many physiological phenomena, pathologies, 8 and in tissue engineering. In particular, several experiments have shown that, if a substrate with 9 overlying cells is cyclically stretched, they wil...

The aim of this work is to provide a mathematical model to describe the early stages of the embryonic development of zebrafish posterior lateral line (PLL). In particular, we focus on evolution of PLL proto-organ (said primordium), from its formation to the beginning of the cyclical behavior that amounts in the assembly of immature proto-neuromasts...

The aim of this article is to study the stability of a non-local kinetic model proposed by Loy & Preziosi (2020a) in which the cell speed is affected by the cell population density non-locally measured and weighted according to a sensing kernel in the direction of polarization and motion. We perform the analysis in a $d$-dimensional setting. We stu...

The morphogenesis of zebrafish posterior lateral line (PLL) is a good predictive model largely used in biology to study cell coordinated reorganization and collective migration regulating pathologies and human embryonic processes. PLL development involves the formation of a placode formed by epithelial cells with mesenchymal characteristics which m...

Collective migration has become a paradigm for emergent behaviour in systems of moving and interacting individual units resulting in coherent motion. In biology, these units are cells or organisms. Collective cell migration is important in embryonic development, where it underlies tissue and organ formation, as well as pathological processes, such...

The morphodynamic evolution of the shape of dunes and piles of granular material is largely dictated by avalanching phenomena, acting when the local slope gets steeper than a critical repose angle. A class of degenerate parabolic models are proposed closing a mass balance equation with several viscoplastic constitutive laws to describe the motion o...

The aim of the article is to study the stability of a non-local kinetic model proposed in [17], that is a kinetic model for cell migration taking into account the non-local sensing performed by a cell in order to decide its direction and speed of movement. We show that pattern formation results from modulation of one non-dimensional parameter that...

Migrating cells choose their preferential direction of motion in response to different signals and stimuli sensed by spanning their external environment. However, the presence of dense fibrous regions, lack of proper substrate, and cell overcrowding may hamper cells from moving in certain directions or even from sensing beyond regions that practica...

The aim of this article is to study the stability of a non-local kinetic model proposed in [16] in which cell speed is affected by the cell population density non-locally measured in the direction of polarization and motion. We perform the analysis in the one-dimensional case and show that the stability depends on two dimensionless parameters, the...

The aim of the article is to study the stability of a non-local kinetic model proposed by Loy and Preziosi (2019a). We split the population in two subgroups and perform a linear stability analysis. We show that pattern formation results from modulation of one non-dimensional parameter that depends on the tumbling frequency, the sensing radius, the...

Cells move by run and tumble, a kind of dynamics in which the cell alternates runs over straight lines and re-orientations. This erratic motion may be influenced by external factors, like chemicals, nutrients, the extra-cellular matrix, in the sense that the cell measures the external field and elaborates the signal eventually adapting its dynamics...

Cell migration is crucial for many physiological and pathological processes. During embryogenesis, neural crest cells undergo coordinated epithelial to mesenchymal transformations and migrate towards various forming organs. Here we develop a computational model to understand how mutual interactions between migrating neural crest cells (NCs) and the...

Multicellular aggregates are an excellent model system to explore the role of tissue biomechanics, which has been demonstrated to play a crucial role in many physiological and pathological processes. In this paper, we propose a three-dimensional mechanical model and apply it to the uniaxial compression of a multicellular aggregate in a realistic bi...

In the present work we embrace a three scales asymptotic homogenization approach to investigate the effective behavior of hierarchical linear elastic composites reinforced by cylindrical, uniaxially aligned fibers and possessing a periodic structure at each hierarchical level of organization. We present our novel results assuming isotropy of the co...

Migrating cells choose their preferential direction of motion in response to different signals and stimuli sensed by spanning their external environment. However, the presence of dense fibrous regions, lack of proper substrate, and cell overcrowding may hamper cells from moving in certain directions or even from sensing beyond regions that practica...

Migrating cells choose their preferential direction of motion in response to different signals and stimuli sensed by spanning their external environment. However, the presence of dense fibrous regions, lack of proper substrate, and cell overcrowding may hamper cells from moving in certain directions or even from sensing beyond regions that practica...

Cells move by run and tumble, a kind of dynamics in which the cell alternates runs over straight lines and reorientations. This erratic motion may be influenced by external factors, like chemicals, nutrients, the extra-cellular matrix, in the sense that the cell measures the external field and elaborates the signal eventually adapting its dynamics....

The transport of particulate by wind constitutes a relevant phenomenon in environmental sciences and civil engineering, because erosion, transport and deposition of particulate can cause serious problems to human infrastructures. From a mathematical point of view, modeling procedure for this phenomenon requires handling the interaction between diff...

Cells move by run and tumble, a kind of dynamics in which the cell alternates runs over straight lines and re-orientations. This erratic motion may be influenced by external factors, like chemicals, nutrients, the extra-cellular matrix, in the sense that the cell measures the external field and elaborates the signal eventually adapting its dynamics...

We consider a continuum mechanical model of cell invasion through thin membranes, which consists of a transmission problem for a system of nonlinear partial differential equations for the cell volume fraction complemented with continuity of stresses and mass flux across the surfaces of the membranes. We reduce the original problem to a limiting tra...

Avalanching plays a crucial role in granular materials dynamics, in particular in the evolution of the shape of the leeward side of sand dunes. This paper presents a physically-based mathematical model capable of reproducing the kinematic evolution of the surface of sand piles and to obtain eventually the stationary configurations, in the presence...

Background: Windblown sand mitigation for civil structures in arid environment is crucial. Indeed, the number of railways crossing deserts and arid lands is increasing. A number of sand mitigation measures already exist. Among them, sand barriers are particularly intended for line-like infrastructures. We reviewed patented sand barriers on the basi...

Cancer is the second leading cause of death worldwide and breast cancer is one of the most frequently diagnosed cancers. Nowadays, thermography technique has emerged as a noninvasive and prospective method to complement mammography and to improve the
efficiency of early and overall detection of breast cancer. In this work, analytical and numerical...

The present work focuses on the integration of analytical and numerical strategies to investigate the thermal distribution of cancerous breasts. Coupled stationary bioheat transfer equations are considered for the glandular and heterogeneous tumor regions, which are characterized by different thermophysical properties. The cross-section of the canc...

In order to move in a three-dimensional extracellular matrix, the nucleus of a cell must squeeze through the narrow spacing among the fibers and, by adhering to them, the cell needs to exert sufficiently strong traction forces. If the nucleus is too stiff, the spacing too narrow, or traction forces too weak, the cell is not able to penetrate the ne...

In the present work coupled stationary bioheat transfer equations are considered. The cancerous breast is characterized by two areas of dissimilar thermal properties: the glandular and tumor tissues. The tumorous region is modeled as a two-phase composite where parallel periodic isotropic circular fibers are embedded in the glandular isotropic matr...

Biological systems are typically formed by different cell phenotypes, characterized by specific biophysical properties and behaviors. Moreover, cells are able to undergo differentiation or phenotypic transitions upon internal or external stimuli. In order to take these phenomena into account, we here propose a modelling framework in which cells can...

The reliable prediction in probabilistic terms of the consequences of aeolian events related to sand transport phenomena is a key element for human activities in arid regions. Threshold shear velocity generating sand lifting is a key component of such a prediction. It suffers from the effect of uncertainties of different origin, such as those relat...

It is nowadays understood that the interactions cells have with the fibrous environment they live in determine their behaviour. In fact, for instance, they play a fundamental role in cell motion, in tumour invasion and metastatization, in stem cell differentiation, and in tissue development.
In this chapter, we will describe several models that dea...

Cell migration results from stepwise mechanical and chemical interactions between cells and their extracellular environment. Mechanistic principles that determine single-cell and collective migration modes and their interconversions depend upon the polarization, adhesion, deformability, contractility, and proteolytic ability of cells. Cellular dete...

Tumor spheroids constitute an effective in vitro tool to investigate the avascular stage of tumor growth. These three-dimensional cell aggregates reproduce the nutrient and proliferation gradients found in the early stages of cancer and can be grown with a strict control of their environmental conditions. In the last years, new experimental techniq...

Mechanical factors play a major role in tumor development and response to treatment. This is more evident for tumors grown in vivo, where cancer cells interact with the different components in the host tissue. Mathematical models are able to characterize the mechanical response of the tumor and can provide a deeper understanding of these interactio...

Computational models for tumor growth provide an effective in silico tool to investigate the different stages of cancer growth. Recently, a series of computational models based on porous media theory has been proposed to predict tumor evolution and its interactions with the host tissue. In addition, a specialization of the original models, adapted...

The cellular Potts model (CPM) is a lattice-based Monte Carlo method, that uses an energetic formalism to describe the phenomenological mechanisms underlying the biophysical problem of interest. We here propose a CPM-derived framework, that relies on a node-based representation of cell-scale elements. This feature has relevant consequences on the o...

Cell migration is a fundamental biological phenomenon during which cells sense their surroundings and respond to different types of signals. In presence of durotaxis, cells preferentially crawl from soft to stiff substrates by reorganizing their cytoskeleton from an isotropic to an anisotropic distribution of actin filaments. In the present paper,...

Normal and tumour cells live in a fibrous environment that is often very heterogeneous, even characterized by the presence of basal membranes and regions with high density of collagen fibres that physiologically comparmentalize cells in well defined regions, as for in situ tumours. In case of metastatic tumours these porous structures are instead i...

Three phenomena are involved in sand movement: erosion, wind transport, and
sedimentation. This paper presents a comprehensive easy-to-use multiphase model
that include all three aspects with a particular attention to situations in
which erosion due to wind shear and sedimentation due to gravity are not in
equilibrium. The interest is related to th...

The aim of this paper is to present a measure-theoretic approach able to derive an Eulerian model of the dynamics of a cell population with a finite number of cells out of a microscopic Lagrangian description of the underlying cellular particle system. By looking at the spatial distribution of cells in terms of a time-evolving probability measure,...

Starting from the results of recent biological experiments, we propose a discrete in continuous mathematical model for the morphogenesis of the posterior lateral line system in zebrafish. Our hybrid description is discrete on the cellular level and continuous on the molecular level. We prove the existence of steady solutions corresponding to the fo...

Cell migration across fibre networks and micro-channel structures has been widely demonstrated to be strongly influenced by the interactions between moving individuals and the surrounding extracellular matrix as well as by the mechanical properties of cell nucleus. In this respect, our work will be devoted to describe several mathematical models, w...

Cell migration is fundamental in a wide variety of physiological and pathological phenomena, among other in cancer invasion and development. In particular, the migratory/invasive capability of single metastatic cells is fundamental in determining the malignancy of a solid tumor. Specific cell migration phenotypes result for instance from the recipr...

This chapter will explain what kind of support mathematics can give to biology and medicine. In order to explain the concepts in practice cell migration is used as a specific example. This phenomenon is of great biomedical interest because it is a fundamental phenomenon both in physiological (e.g. wound healing, immune response) and pathological pr...

This paper deals with the Traction Force Microscopy (TFM) problem. It
consists in obtaining stresses by solving an inverse problem in an elastic medium, from
known experimentally measured displacements. In this article, the application is the
determination of the stresses exerted by a living cell at the surface of an elastic gel.
We propose an abst...

In this paper we propose a "discrete in continuous" mathematical model for
the morphogenesis of the posterior lateral line system in zebrafishes. Our
model follows closely the results obtained in recent biological experiments. We
rely on a hybrid description: discrete for the cellular level and continuous
for the molecular level. We prove the exist...

In this paper we study the mechanical behavior of multicellular aggregates under a cycle of compressive loads and releases. Some analytical properties of the solution are discussed and numerical results are presented for a compressive test under constant force imposed on a cylindrical specimen and for a cycle of compressions and releases. We show t...

PHYSICAL ONCOLOGY IS A GROWING FORCE IN CANCER RESEARCH, AND IT IS ENHANCED BY INTEGRATIVE COMPUTATIONAL ONCOLOGY: the fusion of novel experiments with mathematical and computational modeling. Computational models must be assessed with accurate numerical methods on correctly scaled tissues to avoid numerical artifacts that can cloud analysis. Simul...

The mechanical properties of cell nuclei have been demonstrated to play a fundamental role in cell movement across extracellular networks and micro-channels. In this work, we focus on a mathematical description of a cell entering a cylindrical channel composed of extracellular matrix. An energetic approach is derived in order to obtain a necessary...

In vitro transmesothelial migration assays of ovarian cancer cells, isolated or aggregated in multicellular spheroids, are reproduced deducing suitable Cellular Potts Models (CPM). We show that the simulations are in good agreement with the experimental evidence and that the overall process is regulated by the activity of matrix metalloproteinases...

The degree of spiculation of the tumor edge is a particularly relevant indicator of malignancy in the analysis of breast tumoral masses. This paper introduces four new methods for extracting the spiculation feature of a detected breast lesion on mammography by segmenting the contour of the lesion in a number of regions which are separately analysed...

Two major mechanisms are involved in the formation of blood vasculature: vasculogenesis and angiogenesis. The former term describes the formation of a capillary-like network from either a dispersed or a monolayered population of endothelial cells, reproducible also in vitro by specific experimental assays. The latter term describes the sprouting of...

The migration of tumor cells of different degrees of invasivity is studied, on the basis of the traction forces exerted in time on soft substrates (Young modulus ∼ 10 kPa). It is found that the outliers of the traction stresses can be an effective indicator to distinguish cancer cell lines of different invasiveness. Here, we test two different epit...

A flexible, cell-level, and lattice-based technique, the cellular Potts model accurately describes the phenomenological mechanisms involved in many biological processes. Cellular Potts Models: Multiscale Extensions and Biological Applications gives an interdisciplinary, accessible treatment of these models, from the original methodologies to the la...

The evolution of biological systems is strongly influenced by physical factors, such as applied forces, geometry or the stiffness of the micro-environment. Mechanical changes are particularly important in solid tumour development, as altered stromal-epithelial interactions can provoke a persistent increase in cytoskeletal tension, driving the gene...

A multiscale analysis integrating biomechanics and mechanobiology is today required for deciphering the crosstalk between biochemistry, geometry and elasticity in living materials. In this paper we derive a unified thermomechanical theory coupling growth processes with mass transport phenomena across boundaries and/or material interfaces. Inside a...

A plethora of magnetic nanoparticles has been developed and investigated under different alternating magnetic fields (AMF) for the hyperthermic treatment of malignant tissues. Yet, clinical applications of magnetic hyperthermia are sporadic, mostly due to the low energy conversion efficiency of the metallic nanoparticles and the high tissue concent...

Non Specific Heating at high frequency field. Comparison of total temperature variation ΔT
(A) and SARf
(B) for 5 and 7 nm SPIO formulation with NaCl solutions for: i) the original sample, as after purification; ii) supernatant after centrifugation; and iii) dilution in Milli-Q water. The table on the right reports Fe concentrations and electrical...

Quantification of SARf from a temperature-time curve. Two methods can be used to estimate the SARf, namely the fitting and differential method. The left column presents data for a 7 nm SPIO solution at 0.23 mg ml−1 exposed to 30 MHz –4 kA m−1 AMF; the right column presents data for a 5 nm SPIO solution at 3.5 mg ml−1 exposed to 0.5 MHz –10 kA m−1 A...

Schematics of the circuit diagrams and images for the two apparatus.
(A,
C) High frequency field system. (B, D) Low frequency field system. The table lists their operational conditions.
(TIF)

Hyperhtermic performance at low frequency field. Absolute ΔT
(A)
SARf
(C), and SARMNP
(D) for control samples (DI water, 10 and 150 mM NaCl solutions) and colloidal suspension (∼2 mg ml−1) of 5, 7 and 14 nm particles measured at 500 kHz and 10 kA m−1.
(TIF)