Mechanotransduction refers to the cellular ability to sense mechanical stimuli from the surrounding environment and convert them into biochemical signals that regulate cellular physiology and homeostasis. Mechanosensitive ion channels (MSCs), especially ones of Piezo family (Piezo1 and Piezo2), play a crucial role in mechanotransduction. These transmembrane proteins directly react to mechanical cues by triggering the onset of an ionic current. The relevance of this mechanism in driving physiology and pathology is emerging, and there is a growing need for the identification of an affordable and reliable assay to measure it. Setting up a mechanosensitivity assay requires exerting a mechanical stimulus on single cells while observing the downstream effects of channels opening. We propose an open-hardware approach to stimulate single adherent cells through controlled microindentation, using a 3D-printed actuation platform. We validated the device by measuring the mechanosensitivity of a neural mice cell line where the expression level and activity of Piezo1 were genetically and pharmacologically manipulated. Moreover, this extremely versatile device could be integrated with different read-out technologies, offering a new tool to improve the understanding of mechanotransduction in living cells.

Cellular Mechanosensitivity: Validation of an Adaptable 3D-Printed Device for Microindentation

Capponi, Giulio
;
Neri, Igor;Cottone, Francesco;Mattarelli, Maurizio;
2022

Abstract

Mechanotransduction refers to the cellular ability to sense mechanical stimuli from the surrounding environment and convert them into biochemical signals that regulate cellular physiology and homeostasis. Mechanosensitive ion channels (MSCs), especially ones of Piezo family (Piezo1 and Piezo2), play a crucial role in mechanotransduction. These transmembrane proteins directly react to mechanical cues by triggering the onset of an ionic current. The relevance of this mechanism in driving physiology and pathology is emerging, and there is a growing need for the identification of an affordable and reliable assay to measure it. Setting up a mechanosensitivity assay requires exerting a mechanical stimulus on single cells while observing the downstream effects of channels opening. We propose an open-hardware approach to stimulate single adherent cells through controlled microindentation, using a 3D-printed actuation platform. We validated the device by measuring the mechanosensitivity of a neural mice cell line where the expression level and activity of Piezo1 were genetically and pharmacologically manipulated. Moreover, this extremely versatile device could be integrated with different read-out technologies, offering a new tool to improve the understanding of mechanotransduction in living cells.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11391/1532936
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