The Cytoskeleton as Active Matter


30 Sep - 04 Oct 2024


Physikzentrum Bad Honnef

Scientific organizers:

Prof. Dr. Timo Betz, U Göttingen • Dr. Chase Broedersz, VU Amsterdam, Netherlands • Prof. Franziska Lautenschläger, U des Saarlandes

Controlling matter to the point where simple stimuli can change mechanical properties and lead to force generation up to a controlled shape change represents a holy grail of modern science. While active matter research is advancing in an impressive pace, we are still far from a situation where we can claim the understanding and control required for such active materials to become part of our every-day live. While we are not able to control active matter the way we want, every cell in our body is able to do exactly that. Cells are active, non-equilibrium systems that are able to switch their mechanical properties in seconds from stiff to soft and even from solid to liquid and vice versa. This is possible because cells can precisely control the properties of their intracellular mechanical support structure, the cytoskeleton. In this WE-Heraeus Seminar, we will unite todays leading experts in the field of an active matter description of the cellular cytoskeleton to push the next generation of students and postdocs to the current knowledge level in a single seminar.

The conference language will be English. The Wilhelm and Else Heraeus-Foundation bears the cost of full-board accommodation for all participants.