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Force, Motion and Positioning of Microtubule Asters

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






 FORCASTER project word cloud

Explore the words cloud of the FORCASTER project. It provides you a very rough idea of what is the project "FORCASTER" about.

asters    cell    force    speeds    nuclear    computational    quantitative    scales    stereotyped    organize    sperm    position    spindle    cytoplasm    mt    persistently    exert    grow    manipulation    sea    spatial    physics    division    portions    model    motors    millimeter    perform    tissues    elucidate    function    positioning    mts    subcellular    orchestrate    vivo    self    couple    components    pairs    patterns    active    mechanics    move    insights    orientation    organization    biophysical    friction    single    predict    3d    multiple    themselves    imaging    sites    global    trajectories    size    models    microtubule    living    centrosome    hour    urchin    experiments    center    unprecedented    egg    subsequent    surface    arrays    divisions    bridging    dynamic    shape    drive    motion    polarity    physical    centration    evolve    framework    internal    embryos    suit    migration    magnetic    events    forces    understand    compute    stages    de    nanometer    radiating    mechanisms    aster    micro    fertilization    designs    fill    boundary    cells    generators   

Project "FORCASTER" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
address: RUE MICHEL ANGE 3
city: PARIS
postcode: 75794

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country France [FR]
 Project website
 Total cost 2˙199˙310 €
 EC max contribution 2˙199˙310 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.1. (EXCELLENT SCIENCE - European Research Council (ERC))
 Code Call ERC-2014-CoG
 Funding Scheme ERC-COG
 Starting year 2015
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2015-07-01   to  2020-12-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 


 Project objective

Cells must move and position internal components to perform their function. We here focus on the physical designs which allow microtubule (MT) asters to exert forces in order to move and position themselves in vivo. These are arrays of MTs radiating from the centrosome, which fill up large portions of cells. They orchestrate nuclear positioning and spindle orientation for polarity, division and development. Forces that move asters are generated at nanometer and second scales by MT-associated motors from sites in the cytoplasm or at the cell surface. How MTs and force-generators self-organize to control aster motion and position at millimeter and hour scales is not known. We will use a suit of biophysical experiments and models to address how aster micro-mechanics contribute to aster migration, centration, de-centration and orientation in a single in vivo system, using the early stages of Sea urchin development as a quantitative model. We aim to: 1) Elucidate mechanisms that drive aster large-scale motion, using sperm aster migration after fertilization during which asters grow and move rapidly and persistently to the large-egg center. We will investigate how speeds and trajectories depend on boundary conditions and on the dynamic spatial organization of force-generators. 2) Implement magnetic-based subcellular force measurements of MT asters. We will use this to understand how single force-events are integrated at the scale of asters, how global forces may evolve will aster size, shape, in centration and de-centration processes, using various stages of development, and cell manipulation; and to compute aster friction. 3) Couple computational models and 3D imaging to understand and predict stereotyped division patterns driven by subsequent aster positioning and aster-pairs orientation in the early divisions of Sea urchin embryos and in other tissues. This framework bridging multiple scales will bring unprecedented insights on the physics of living active matter.


year authors and title journal last update
List of publications.
2020 Jing Xie, Nicolas Minc
Cytoskeleton Force Exertion in Bulk Cytoplasm
published pages: , ISSN: 2296-634X, DOI: 10.3389/fcell.2020.00069
Frontiers in Cell and Developmental Biology 8 2020-02-19
2019 Valeria Davì, Louis Chevalier, Haotian Guo, Hirokazu Tanimoto, Katia Barrett, Etienne Couturier, Arezki Boudaoud, Nicolas Minc
Systematic mapping of cell wall mechanics in the regulation of cell morphogenesis
published pages: 13833-13838, ISSN: 0027-8424, DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1820455116
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 116/28 2019-12-16
2018 Armin Haupt, Dmitry Ershov, Nicolas Minc
A Positive Feedback between Growth and Polarity Provides Directional Persistency and Flexibility to the Process of Tip Growth
published pages: 3342-3351.e3, ISSN: 0960-9822, DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2018.09.022
Current Biology 28/20 2019-08-06
2019 Jérémy Sallé, Jing Xie, Dmitry Ershov, Milan Lacassin, Serge Dmitrieff, Nicolas Minc
Asymmetric division through a reduction of microtubule centering forces
published pages: 771-782, ISSN: 0021-9525, DOI: 10.1083/jcb.201807102
The Journal of Cell Biology 218/3 2019-08-06
2016 Hirokazu Tanimoto, Akatsuki Kimura, Nicolas Minc
Shape–motion relationships of centering microtubule asters
published pages: 777-787, ISSN: 0021-9525, DOI: 10.1083/jcb.201510064
The Journal of Cell Biology 212/7 2019-08-06
2016 Anaëlle Pierre, Jérémy Sallé, Martin Wühr, Nicolas Minc
Generic Theoretical Models to Predict Division Patterns of Cleaving Embryos
published pages: 667-682, ISSN: 1534-5807, DOI: 10.1016/j.devcel.2016.11.018
Developmental Cell 39/6 2019-08-06
2018 Valeria Davì, Hirokazu Tanimoto, Dmitry Ershov, Armin Haupt, Henry De Belly, Rémi Le Borgne, Etienne Couturier, Arezki Boudaoud, Nicolas Minc
Mechanosensation Dynamically Coordinates Polar Growth and Cell Wall Assembly to Promote Cell Survival
published pages: 170-182.e7, ISSN: 1534-5807, DOI: 10.1016/j.devcel.2018.03.022
Developmental Cell 45/2 2019-08-06
2018 Armin Haupt, Nicolas Minc
How cells sense their own shape – mechanisms to probe cell geometry and their implications in cellular organization and function
published pages: jcs214015, ISSN: 0021-9533, DOI: 10.1242/jcs.214015
Journal of Cell Science 131/6 2019-08-06
2018 Hirokazu Tanimoto, Jeremy Sallé, Louise Dodin, Nicolas Minc
Physical forces determining the persistency and centring precision of microtubule asters
published pages: , ISSN: 1745-2473, DOI: 10.1038/s41567-018-0154-4
Nature Physics 2019-08-06
2018 Benjamin Lacroix, Gaëlle Letort, Laras Pitayu, Jérémy Sallé, Marine Stefanutti, Gilliane Maton, Anne-Marie Ladouceur, Julie C. Canman, Paul S. Maddox, Amy S. Maddox, Nicolas Minc, François Nédélec, Julien Dumont
Microtubule Dynamics Scale with Cell Size to Set Spindle Length and Assembly Timing
published pages: 496-511.e6, ISSN: 1534-5807, DOI: 10.1016/j.devcel.2018.04.022
Developmental Cell 45/4 2019-08-06
2017 H. Tanimoto, N. Minc
Quantitative approaches for the study of microtubule aster motion in large eggs
published pages: 69-80, ISSN: , DOI: 10.1016/bs.mcb.2016.12.003
Methods in Cell Biology 139 2019-08-06
2015 Daria Bonazzi, Armin Haupt, Hirokazu Tanimoto, Delphine Delacour, Delphine Salort, Nicolas Minc
Actin-Based Transport Adapts Polarity Domain Size to Local Cellular Curvature
published pages: 2677-2683, ISSN: 0960-9822, DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2015.08.046
Current Biology 25/20 2019-08-06

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