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Dev Growth Differ. 2017 Jun;59(5):471-490. doi: 10.1111/dgd.12381. Epub 2017 Jul 17.

Mathematical model of collective cell migrations based on cell polarity.

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Research Institute for Electronic Science, Hokkaido University, N12-W7, Kita-ku, Sapporo, Hokkaido, 060-0812, Japan.
Division of Life Science, Graduate School of Life Science, Hokkaido University, N10-W8, Kita-ku, Sapporo, Hokkaido, 060-0810, Japan.
Transdisciplinary Life Science Course, Faculty of Advanced Life Science, Hokkaido University, N10-W8, Kita-ku, Sapporo, Hokkaido, 060-0810, Japan.


Individual cells migrate toward the direction of the cell polarity generated by interior or exterior factors. Under situations without guides such as chemoattractants, they migrate randomly. On the other hand, it has been observed that cell groups lead to systematic collective cell migrations. For example, Dictyostelium discoideum and Madin-Darby canine kidney (epithelial) cells exhibit typical collective cell migration patterns such as uniformly directional migration and rotational migration. In particular, it has been suggested from experimental investigations that rotational migrations are intimately related to morphogenesis of organs and tissues in several species. Thus, it is conjectured that collective cell migrations are controlled by universal mechanisms of cells. In this paper, we review actual experimental data related to collective cell migrations on dishes and show that our self-propelled particle model based on the cell polarity can accurately represent actual migration behaviors. Furthermore, we show that collective cell migration modes observed in our model are robust.


cell migration; cell polarity; computer; mathematical model; morphogenesis

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