Sci. Form Vol. 3 (No. 1), p. 65, 1988

Red Blood Cell Pattern Formation

Youichi Kobuchi

Department of Biophysics, Faculty of Science, Kyoto University, Kyoto 606, Japan

Keywords: Red Blood Cell, Rouleaux Formation

Abstract. Shapes of cells are so diverse that it is often difficult to describe them in a simple and unified fashion. When we consider a pattern formation process or cell sorting of many cells, however, the usual refuge is to treat the cells as having regular shapes such as squares or regular hexagons. The cell sorting model of GOEL et al. (J. theor. Biol., 28. 423. 1970) is a typical example of such treatment. They assumed that square cells were placed in a two-dimensional lattice space and adopted an adhesion energy formulation to define the dynamics of cell pattern change. A similar formalism was used in various cell-sorting models with square or hexagonal cells.
We have proposed a red blood cell pattern formation model in which each cell is represented by a rectangle. The shape of the model cell and its anisotropic cell adhesion characteristics make it possible to capture rather complicated cell aggregation and reaggregation processes. We compare the set of absolutely stable patterns and cell aggregate patterns for both actual and computer-simulated cases to obtain the basic validity of the framework. For the details, refer to KOBUCHI, ITO, and OGIWARA (J. theor. Biol., 130, 129. 1988).
We believe that general analyses of such oblong cell aggregation patterns through differential cell adhesion are warranted since actual cells usually do not have a regular shape.