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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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19 March 2018

A fast confocal system for calcium imaging in brain slices

In brain slices, resolving fast Ca2+ fluorescence signals from submicron structures is typically achieved using two-photon or confocal scanning microscopy, an approach that limits the number of scanned points.

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19 March 2018

Mechanosensitivity of cancer cells in contact with soft substrates

Cancer cells are usually found to be softer than normal cells, but their stiffness changes when they are in contact with different environments because of mechanosensitivity. For example, they adhere to a given substrate by tuning their cytoskeleton, thus affecting their rheological properties.

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7 February 2018

30 years later: the dynamical transition studied under high hydrostatic pressure

Proteins are not fixed, they constantly change their conformation due to fluctuations in their energy landscape. Beyond a certain temperature, these dynamic changes of conformation are important, proteins undergo what is called a dynamic transition. This work examines the effect of pressure on this transition observed originally 30 years ago.

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