Understanding how tissues are organized in homeostasis is key to uncover the causes and mechanisms of pathological variations.
In Dr Luis Maria Escudero Cuadrado's lab, they combine Developmental Biology, Computational Biology, Physics, Mathematics and Biomedicine concepts to obtain relevant quantitative information about how living tissues are organized.
Following this general approach, they have investigated epithelial organization in three dimensions (3D). Epithelial cells have been traditionally depicted as prisms with polygonal apical and basal faces. Recently, they have found in a number of different epithelia, that cells exchange their neighbours along the apico-basal axis.
Importantly, this phenomenon is incompatible with the traditional view of epithelial cells as prisms and compels the cells to adopt a new geometrical shape that they name “scutoids”. These surprising results provide a more realistic framework to understand and explain the architecture of epithelia.
In this talk, Luis will present new lines of research that continue the work in epithelial organization and that open new avenues to investigate tissue packing problems in other systems.
Dr Luis Maria Escudero Cuadrado joined Prof. Juan Modolell's lab at the Centro de Biología Molecular "Severo Ochoa" (CBMSO, CSIC) in September 1998, to make his PhD in the development of the peripheral nervous system of Drosophila melanogaster. In October 2004, Luis moved to the UK to work at the Medical Research Council, Laboratory of Molecular Biology (MRC-LMB, Cambridge) under the supervision of Dr. Matthew Freeman. There, he studied the mechanisms that control cell shape and epithelial organization during the development of Drosophila. At the same time, he started a new investigation line in collaboration with Dr. Madan Babu (MRC-LMB). They developed a new method to analyse objectively any epithelium using computerized image analysis.
In February 2010, Luis joined the Instituto de Biomedicina de Sevilla (IBiS) in the lab space of Dr. Alberto Pascual. This allowed him to start his independent research career and focus in the analysis of biological and biomedical images using Computational Biology methods. Now, Luis' group is focused in the understanding of the organization of living tissues during development and disease. They have formed the “Complex Organization of Living Matter” laboratory at the Cell Biology Department of Seville University and the Instituto de Biomedicina de Sevilla.