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19 June 2018

Are cells ticklish?

Cells are sensitive to their mechanical environment: pressure or shear can provoke biochemical responses. In order to accurately test the reaction of adherent cells to mechanical stimulations, we developed magneto-active substrates.

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4 June 2018

Modeling of surfactant-driven front instabilities in spreading bacterial colonies

The spreading of bacterial colonies at solid-air interfaces is determined by the physico-chemical properties of the involved interfaces. A widespread strategy for an efficient surface colonization is the production of surfactants.

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17 May 2018

To push one’s way through a crowd…

Making your way through a dense crowd is not an easy task. A distressed person seeking assistance or a public figure wanting to pass through a crowd of supporters are facing various scenarios. The motion of an individual in a crowd is studied for several scenarios using a 2D non-inertial mechanical model of interacting rigid disks solved with numerical simulation.

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2 May 2018

Soft layers give a push to flowing objects

In contrast to a speeding plane ready for take-off, a spherical particle moving slowly past a flat surface is not supposed to lift away from it… unless the particle or the surface are soft enough to be deformed by the pressure in the fluid into which they are immersed.

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21 March 2018

Unusual extracellular matrix organization in elephant ivory.

Ivory has been used since prehistorical times to produce objects with high symbolic value (figurines, beads, ornaments...) which therefore constitute important archaeological records of socio-cultural habits of past societies. By combining polarized light imaging, electron microscopy and X-ray scattering, the origin of the checkboard pattern visible on elephant ivory has now been elucidated.

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