Morphogenesis of membrane invaginations in spherical confinement
Equipe BioPhysStat, ICPMB-FR CNRS 2843, Université de Lorraine - 1, boulevard Arago, F-57070 Metz, France, EU
2 Computational Physics for Engineering Materials, ETH Zurich - Schafmattstr. 6, HIF, CH-8093 Zurich, Switzerland
Accepted: 20 February 2012
We study the morphology of a fluid membrane in spherical confinement. When the area of the membrane is slightly larger than the area of the outer container, a single axisymmetric invagination is observed. For higher area, self-contact occurs: the invagination breaks symmetry and deforms into an ellipsoid-like shape connected to its outer part via a small slit. For even higher areas, a second invagination forms inside the original invagination. The folding patterns observed could constitute basic building blocks in the morphogenesis of biological tissues and organelles.
PACS: 87.16.D- – Membranes, bilayers, and vesicles / 87.10.Pq – Elasticity theory
© EPLA, 2012