Karin John

Biophysics and Physics of Soft Active Matter

Theory and Mechanistic Modeling

Collaborations:

U. Thiele - Uni M√ľnster
L. Blanchoin & M. Théry - Cytomorpholab
D. Chrétien - IGDR Rennes
S. Lecuyer - LPENS Lyon
I. Fobis-Loisy - LRDP ENS Lyon

My recent major research activities can be condensed into four axes:

Mechano-chemical coupling in dynamic elastic filament networks: application of homogenization techniques to active and passive semiflexible filament networks; investigation of their macroscale mechanical properties depending on their microscopic properties; stress induced morphological instabilities.

Mechanical and dynamical properties of microtubules: application of kinetic Monte Carlo models to the lattice dynamics of microtubules; investigation of the origins of lattice plasticity (i.e. creation of defects and their dynamics) and the role of microtubule associated proteins therein (e.g. molecular motors).

Dynamics of thin films and droplets of passive and active fluids on solid substrates: chemical systems (i.e. chemically driven droplets), ratchet driven thin-film flows, droplets transport by substrate vibrations, but also biological systems (biofilm spreading phenomena, symmetry-breaking and motion in living cells modeled via diffuse-interface models).

Structure formation in reaction diffusion systems with molecular interaction: systems where passive self-assembly processes (i.e. phase separation) are in competition with active self-organization processes driven by chemical reactions and diffusive transport; such processes are very relevant in living cells.