Outside-In. Strain stiffening as a key to cell control (2017–2022)

In any multicellular organisms, the extracellular matrix (ECM) provides cells with essential mechanical (such as strain stiffening) and biochemical support. The ECM is also critical for biological processes inside the cell, such as proliferation, differentiation and migration. Exactly how the physical and chemical properties of ECMs on the outside modify the behaviour of a cell on the inside remains unclear. This Laureate program aims to unravel the highly complex mechanical behaviour of the extracellular matrix, and in doing so, develop a whole new class of sophisticated and responsive ECM materials. Outcomes will include a blueprint for synthetic ECMs, pushing the boundaries of materials development in the biological and life sciences.
Grant type:
ARC Australian Laureate Fellowships
Funded by:
Australian Research Council