Integrative Mechanobiology: Cancer Mechanics and Beyond

09/10/2018 - 3:00pm
Xin Tang, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Department of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering, University of Florida
Communicore, C1-17

Biophysical signaling strongly influences embryological development, differentiation, morphogenesis, tissue patterning, and aging as well as various other biological functions. When mechanosensing, mechanotransduction and mechanoresponse are mis-regulated, diseases usually occur. Invention of new technologies generally enables the dissection and manipulation of basic operating principles underlying biological processes, leading to new potential therapeutics to improve health. In this talk, I will firstly describe examples of how mechanically soft matrices can induce human carcinoma cells to undergo a malignant progression. Secondly, I will introduce a few new tools developed by my colleagues and myself. We apply them to the systematic investigation of uni- and multi-cellular systems, aiming to obtain a quantitative understanding of how mechanical force and bioelectrical signals link form and function of living systems. Finally, I will discuss how we may integrate fundamental science and new technology development for diseases treatment and tissue regeneration.

Xin Tang earned his Ph.D. in mechanical science and engineering from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign for studying the force-induced cancer metastasis and cardiomyocytes synchrony. Tang then joined Professor Adam Cohen's lab as HHMI-funded postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University's Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology, working on in vivo mechanobiology, functional imaging and genome editing in living zebrafish. Tang is an assistant professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at University of Florida since 2018. Current research focus of Tang's Integrative Mechanobiology Laboratory is on biomechanics, unconventional mechano-electrophysiology, and in vivo/vitro fluorescent bio-imaging.

Academic year: