Oscillatory behavior in tissue biology is ubiquitous and may be observed in the form of either chemical or mechanical signals. We present here and solve a mechanical cell model that exhibits oscillations emerging from delayed viscoelastic rheological laws. These include a time delay between the mechanical response and the rest-length changes, which evolve proportionally to the delayed cell deformation and use a remodeling rate parameter. We show that different regimes (no oscillatory response, sustained oscillations, and unstable oscillations) are obtained for different values of the delay or the remodeling rate. The results are analytically demonstrated in a one-dimensional problem with one and two cells that are represented by simple line elements. Oscillations of the cell deformations are obtained whenever different delays coexist, or when the delay is size-dependent. We also extend our results to a multicellular two-dimensional vertex model that includes the same rheological law, and which inherits the presence of critical values of the delay or remodeling rate. We numerically show that indeed the size-dependent rest-length changes induce oscillations in the cell shapes and areas.

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Published on 01/01/2018

DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevE.98.052409
Licence: CC BY-NC-SA license

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