Systems Biology of Cell Polarity and Cell Division

Matthieu Piel

Matthieu Piel Team Leader Tel:

Our team studies cell polarization, a process which involves a reorganization of the cell cytoskeleton and movement of cellular organelles, usually triggered by external cues. We are particularly interested in cell polarity in the context of cell migration and cell division. We develop and use innovative tools based on nano and micro-fabrication techniques, to control and modulate the main physical and chemical parameters of the cell micro-environment. These tools are coupled with high quality quantitative microscopy, and used alongside molecular and cell biology techniques, to obtain a quantitative description of the cell behavior. As well as highlighting new basic concepts about cell polarity, our multidisciplinary approach leads to the development of novel tools with potential applications in biomedical research.

 

Here is a video that we produced for the ASCB about the life of a dendritic cell:

ASCB Celldance 2016 – Piel from ASCB on Vimeo.

Figure 1 : Our most recent innovation in cell micropatterning allows dynamic control of cell spreading (B), cell shape (D, E) and cell co-culture (C), using simple click-chemistry (A), see Van Dongen et al., Advanced Materials, 2013
Figure 1 : Our most recent innovation in cell micropatterning allows dynamic control of cell spreading (B), cell shape (D, E) and cell co-culture (C), using simple click-chemistry (A), see Van Dongen et al., Advanced Materials, 2013

We have demonstrated that micro-patterns of extra-cellular matrix molecules are able to determine the polarity and division axis of cultured cells. This discovery was patented and licensed to a start-up company (CYTOO, created in 2008) and we have kept developing this technology (see figure 1). In the past few years, we have developed other tools to control the cell micro-environment (micro-channels, confiners etc) and we have exploited them to understand how mechanical constrains affect cell division and migration.

The focus of our current research is how cells proliferate and migrate when space is limited. We want to understand how cells (immune cells and cancer cells) can produce efficient motion under confinement and squeeze through small holes. We also want to understand how physical constrains affect dividing cells.

Our current project on cell proliferation under external constrains has been awarded an ERC Consolidator grant in 2012.

Figure 2: (A) One of our recent discovery: external forces can orient cell division (see Fink et al. Nat. Cell Biol, 2011). (B) Rational of our current project on cells under confinement. (C) One of our confinement tools, here to study cell squeezing through a narrow gap (see Heuze et al. Meth. Mol Biol. 2010)
Figure 2: (A) One of our recent discovery: external forces can orient cell division (see Fink et al. Nat. Cell Biol, 2011). (B) Rational of our current project on cells under confinement. (C) One of our confinement tools, here to study cell squeezing through a narrow gap (see Heuze et al. Meth. Mol Biol. 2010)

M. Piel is author of more than 60 publications (H factor 26). He holds three patents, and is a co-founder of the CYTOO Company. He is teaching at the Center for Interdisciplinary Research in Institut Cochin. He also teaches cell biology and biophysics in several master courses in Paris. He is one of the founder of Institut Pierre-Gilles de Gennes for Microfluidics. He has been invited to over 30 international meetings and gave over 40 seminars in the last 5 years. He was awaded the Bronze medal of CNRS in 2012.

Key publications

Year of publication 2016

M Raab, M Gentili, H de Belly, H R Thiam, P Vargas, A J Jimenez, F Lautenschlaeger, Raphaël Voituriez, A M Lennon-Duménil, N Manel, M Piel (2016 Apr 15)

ESCRT III repairs nuclear envelope ruptures during cell migration to limit DNA damage and cell death.

Science (New York, N.Y.) : DOI : 10.1126/science.aad7611
Hawa-Racine Thiam, Pablo Vargas, Nicolas Carpi, Carolina Lage Crespo, Matthew Raab, Emmanuel Terriac, Megan C King, Jordan Jacobelli, Arthur S Alberts, Theresia Stradal, Ana-Maria Lennon-Dumenil, Matthieu Piel (2016 Mar 16)

Perinuclear Arp2/3-driven actin polymerization enables nuclear deformation to facilitate cell migration through complex environments.

Nature communications : 10997 : DOI : 10.1038/ncomms10997
Pablo Vargas, Paolo Maiuri, Marine Bretou, Pablo J Sáez, Paolo Pierobon, Mathieu Maurin, Mélanie Chabaud, Danielle Lankar, Dorian Obino, Emmanuel Terriac, Matthew Raab, Hawa-Racine Thiam, Thomas Brocker, Susan M Kitchen-Goosen, Arthur S Alberts, Praveen Sunareni, Sheng Xia, Rong Li, Raphael Voituriez, Matthieu Piel, Ana-Maria Lennon-Duménil (2016 Jan 8)

Innate control of actin nucleation determines two distinct migration behaviours in dendritic cells.

Nature cell biology : 43-53 : DOI : 10.1038/ncb3284

Year of publication 2015

Ewa Zlotek-Zlotkiewicz, Sylvain Monnier, Giovanni Cappello, Mael Le Berre, Matthieu Piel (2015 Nov 25)

Optical volume and mass measurements show that mammalian cells swell during mitosis.

The Journal of cell biology : 765-74 : DOI : 10.1083/jcb.201505056
Paolo Maiuri, Jean-François Rupprecht, Stefan Wieser, Verena Ruprecht, Olivier Bénichou, Nicolas Carpi, Mathieu Coppey, Simon De Beco, Nir Gov, Carl-Philipp Heisenberg, Carolina Lage Crespo, Franziska Lautenschlaeger, Maël Le Berre, Ana-Maria Lennon-Dumenil, Matthew Raab, Hawa-Racine Thiam, Matthieu Piel, Michael Sixt, Raphaël Voituriez (2015 Apr 9)

Actin flows mediate a universal coupling between cell speed and cell persistence.

Cell : 374-86 : DOI : 10.1016/j.cell.2015.01.056
Yan-Jun Liu, Maël Le Berre, Franziska Lautenschlaeger, Paolo Maiuri, Andrew Callan-Jones, Mélina Heuzé, Tohru Takaki, Raphaël Voituriez, Matthieu Piel (2015 Feb 12)

Confinement and low adhesion induce fast amoeboid migration of slow mesenchymal cells.

Cell : 659-72 : DOI : 10.1016/j.cell.2015.01.007
All publications