Emergent versus Individual-Based Multicellular Chemotaxis

Julien Varennes, Sean Fancher, Bumsoo Han, Andrew Mugler
2017 Physical Review Letters  
Multicellular chemotaxis can occur via individually chemotaxing cells that are mechanically coupled. Alternatively, it can emerge collectively, from cells chemotaxing differently in a group than they would individually. Here we consider collective movement that emerges from cells on the exterior of the collective responding to chemotactic signals, whereas bulk cells remain uninvolved in sensing and directing the collective. We find that the precision of this type of emergent chemotaxis is
more » ... than that of individual-based chemotaxis for one-dimensional cell chains and two-dimensional cell sheets, but not three-dimensional cell clusters. We describe the physical origins of these results, discuss their biological implications, and show how they can be tested using common experimental measures such as the chemotactic index.
doi:10.1103/physrevlett.119.188101 pmid:29219578 fatcat:zeommr34izepfprckvxq62kevm