Talk: “Mechanical Aspects: Fight of Immune Cells Against Bacterial Infections” by Prof. Viola Vogel, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology, Zurich, UNAM Conference Room, 3:40 PM February 5 (EN)

Dear Colleagues and Students,

You are cordially invited to UNAM Nanocolloquium seminars focusing on advancements in the field of nanoscience and nanotechnology. The seminars bring us the most recent developments in these exciting fields.

The 1st talk of this term will be presented by Prof. Viola Vogel*
Title: Mechanical Aspects: Fight of Immune Cells Against Bacterial Infections

Date: February 5, 2016 (Friday)
Time: 15:40
Place: UNAM Conference Room

ABSTRACT – Cells exploit mechanical forces to sense the physical aspects of their microenvironments and immune cells exploit sophisticated physical mechanisms to pull on bacteria and pick them up from surfaces. To clear pathogens from host tissues or biomaterial surfaces, macrophages have to first contact and hold on to their prey, while they prepare themselves to generate sufficient force to break a large cluster of adhesive bonds by which bacteria tightly bind to surfaces or tissue fibers. Even though many strategies have been applied by mankind to fight bacterial infections, primarily designed to either kill bacteria via antibiotics or more recently to prevent their adhesion to surfaces and host tissues, little attention has been given to ask how these strategies might compromise the ability of our immune cells to pick up their prey. Unexpectedly, novel insights into nanomechanical aspects also revealed some adverse and unanticipated side effects how common antibacterial drugs impair the ability of our immune cells to fight infections. Various examples will be presented illustrating sophisticated nanomechanical concepts how cells exploit mechanical forces to recognize their environments.

* Department of Health Sciences and Technology, ETH Zurich, Switzerland.

Next week seminar:

Feb 12 Kamil Ekinci – Boston University, Mechanical Engineering

All interested are cordially invited!