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Quantifying mechanical force in axonal growth and guidance.

Athamneh AI, Suter DM - Front Cell Neurosci (2015)

Bottom Line: In particular, research has shown that force is involved in growth cone-mediated axonal growth and guidance as well as stretch-induced elongation when an organism increases in size after forming initial synaptic connections.Furthermore, we address why a wide range of force values have been reported in the literature, and what these values mean in the context of neuronal mechanics.We hope that this review will provide a guide for those interested in studying the role of force in development and regeneration of neuronal networks.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Bindley Bioscience Center, Birck Nanotechnology Center, Department of Biological Sciences, Purdue University West Lafayette, IN, USA.

ABSTRACT
Mechanical force plays a fundamental role in neuronal development, physiology, and regeneration. In particular, research has shown that force is involved in growth cone-mediated axonal growth and guidance as well as stretch-induced elongation when an organism increases in size after forming initial synaptic connections. However, much of the details about the exact role of force in these fundamental processes remain unknown. In this review, we highlight: (1) standing questions concerning the role of mechanical force in axonal growth and guidance; and (2) different experimental techniques used to quantify forces in axons and growth cones. We believe that satisfying answers to these questions will require quantitative information about the relationship between elongation, forces, cytoskeletal dynamics, axonal transport, signaling, substrate adhesion, and stiffness contributing to directional growth advance. Furthermore, we address why a wide range of force values have been reported in the literature, and what these values mean in the context of neuronal mechanics. We hope that this review will provide a guide for those interested in studying the role of force in development and regeneration of neuronal networks.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Reported literature values of force in neurons using different experimental techniques (AFM, atomic force microscopy; MEMS, microelectromechanical system-based force sensors; MN, microneedle; OT, optical tweezers; TFM, traction force microscopy).
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Figure 2: Reported literature values of force in neurons using different experimental techniques (AFM, atomic force microscopy; MEMS, microelectromechanical system-based force sensors; MN, microneedle; OT, optical tweezers; TFM, traction force microscopy).

Mentions: Figure 2 and Table 1 show force values reported in the literature for different parts of the neuron using different experimental techniques. The graph illustrates the wide range of force values even for the same experimental technique or the same part of the neuron. For example, values reported for traction force generated by the growth cone ranged over five orders of magnitude. Indeed, different force values can be expected for different types of neurons and different sizes of neuronal areas probed, which will result in different amounts of cytoskeletal structures and motors that are engaged in the process. Furthermore, different experimental techniques may provide slightly different values for the same neuron and area. However, it is possible that some of the variations in force values could be due to calibration problems. If anything, the discrepancy illustrated in Figure 2 suggests that extreme caution must be taken when comparing force values reported in different studies. Setting up standardized calibration methods for each force measurement method might be an approach to reduce some of the variations currently found in the literature.


Quantifying mechanical force in axonal growth and guidance.

Athamneh AI, Suter DM - Front Cell Neurosci (2015)

Reported literature values of force in neurons using different experimental techniques (AFM, atomic force microscopy; MEMS, microelectromechanical system-based force sensors; MN, microneedle; OT, optical tweezers; TFM, traction force microscopy).
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4584967&req=5

Figure 2: Reported literature values of force in neurons using different experimental techniques (AFM, atomic force microscopy; MEMS, microelectromechanical system-based force sensors; MN, microneedle; OT, optical tweezers; TFM, traction force microscopy).
Mentions: Figure 2 and Table 1 show force values reported in the literature for different parts of the neuron using different experimental techniques. The graph illustrates the wide range of force values even for the same experimental technique or the same part of the neuron. For example, values reported for traction force generated by the growth cone ranged over five orders of magnitude. Indeed, different force values can be expected for different types of neurons and different sizes of neuronal areas probed, which will result in different amounts of cytoskeletal structures and motors that are engaged in the process. Furthermore, different experimental techniques may provide slightly different values for the same neuron and area. However, it is possible that some of the variations in force values could be due to calibration problems. If anything, the discrepancy illustrated in Figure 2 suggests that extreme caution must be taken when comparing force values reported in different studies. Setting up standardized calibration methods for each force measurement method might be an approach to reduce some of the variations currently found in the literature.

Bottom Line: In particular, research has shown that force is involved in growth cone-mediated axonal growth and guidance as well as stretch-induced elongation when an organism increases in size after forming initial synaptic connections.Furthermore, we address why a wide range of force values have been reported in the literature, and what these values mean in the context of neuronal mechanics.We hope that this review will provide a guide for those interested in studying the role of force in development and regeneration of neuronal networks.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Bindley Bioscience Center, Birck Nanotechnology Center, Department of Biological Sciences, Purdue University West Lafayette, IN, USA.

ABSTRACT
Mechanical force plays a fundamental role in neuronal development, physiology, and regeneration. In particular, research has shown that force is involved in growth cone-mediated axonal growth and guidance as well as stretch-induced elongation when an organism increases in size after forming initial synaptic connections. However, much of the details about the exact role of force in these fundamental processes remain unknown. In this review, we highlight: (1) standing questions concerning the role of mechanical force in axonal growth and guidance; and (2) different experimental techniques used to quantify forces in axons and growth cones. We believe that satisfying answers to these questions will require quantitative information about the relationship between elongation, forces, cytoskeletal dynamics, axonal transport, signaling, substrate adhesion, and stiffness contributing to directional growth advance. Furthermore, we address why a wide range of force values have been reported in the literature, and what these values mean in the context of neuronal mechanics. We hope that this review will provide a guide for those interested in studying the role of force in development and regeneration of neuronal networks.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus