High-resolution probing of cellular force transmission

Daisuke Mizuno, Rommel Bacabac, Catherine Tardin, David Head, Christoph F. Schmidt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

79 Citations (Scopus)


Cells actively probe mechanical properties of their environment by exerting internally generated forces. The response they encounter profoundly affects their behavior. Here we measure in a simple geometry the forces a cell exerts suspended by two optical traps. Our assay quantifies both the overall force and the fraction of that force transmitted to the environment. Mimicking environments of varying stiffness by adjusting the strength of the traps, we found that the force transmission is highly dependent on external compliance. This suggests a calibration mechanism for cellular mechanosensing.

Original languageEnglish
Article number168102
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number16
Publication statusPublished - Apr 21 2009

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy


Dive into the research topics of 'High-resolution probing of cellular force transmission'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this