Friday, July 22 2022
11:00 - 12:00

IMSc Webinar

The waves within us: from single cilium to the formation of metachronal waves

Dr. Brato Chakrabarti

Flatiron Institute, Simons Foundation

An important class of microscale fluid-structure interactions in biology involves the
interactions and deformations of flexible elasticae (both passive and active) with fluid
flows. This is evident from fundamental biological transport processes such as the
swimming of microorganisms using internally actuated cilia or flagella, the transport of
material by the coordinated action of ciliary carpets, and the involvement of both actuated
and passive flexible filaments in the first symmetry-breaking of vertebrate cells. Both
single filaments, and assemblies, are challenging to study because individual filaments
have many internal degrees of freedom in deformation and can exhibit microscopic
instabilities. The interaction of many filaments in these assemblies can be manifested as
macroscopic emergent behavior. I will present a broad overview of these problems and
outline my efforts in developing computational methods for such fluid-structure interaction
phenomena. I will then discuss a biophysical model of a spontaneously beating cilium
that incorporates various details of their microscopic physics. Using this model, I will
explain how beds of beating cilia organize to translate the nanoscopic activity of internal
molecular motors into the large-scale metachronal waves that help in fluid pumping and

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Meeting ID: 990 5480 9933
Passcode: 590935

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