Morphogenesis of the force-generating machinery in cells

Cells regulate and control their internal structures and also mechanically communicate with the environment through forces and motions that motor proteins generate interacting with cytoskeletal networks. This project aims at elucidating the morphogenesis of the cellular force-generating machinery and its correlation with generated and transmitted forces. Using a dual optical trap coupled to a confocal microscope with cw-STED functionality, we will quantitate mechanical properties and image the 3D structure of acto-myosin stress fibers in our idealized geometry.