J Integr Plant Biol. ›› 2006, Vol. 48 ›› Issue (6): -.DOI: 10.1111/j.1744-7909.2006.00244.x

• Research Articles •    

Mechanical Response of Single Plant Cells to Cell Poking: A Numerical Simulation Model

Rong Wang, Qun-Ying Jiao and De-Qiang Wei   

Abstract: Cell poking is an experimental technique that is widely used to study the mechanical properties of plant cells. A full understanding of the mechanical responses of plant cells to poking force is helpful for experimental work. The aim of this study was to numerically investigate the stress distribution of the cell wall, cell turgor, and deformation of plant cells in response to applied poking force. Furthermore, the locations damaged during poking were analyzed. The model simulates cell poking, with the cell treated as a spherical, homogeneous, isotropic elastic membrane, filled with incompressible, highly viscous liquid. Equilibrium equations for the contact region and the non-contact regions were determined by using membrane theory. The boundary conditions and continuity conditions for the solution of the problem were found. The force-deformation curve, turgor pressure and tension of the cell wall under cell poking conditions were obtained. The tension of the cell wall circumference was larger than that of the meridian. In general, maximal stress occurred at the equator around. When cell deformation increased to a certain level, the tension at the poker tip exceeded that of the equator. Breakage of the cell wall may start from the equator or the poker tip, depending on the deformation. A nonlinear model is suitable for estimating turgor, stress, and stiffness, and numerical simulation is a powerful method for determining plant cell mechanical properties.(Author for correspondence.E-mail:jiaoqy@cau.edu.cn)

Key words: 植物细胞, 细胞穿刺, 力—位移曲线, 内压, 细胞壁张力

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