Update: Finite element modeling of shape changes in plant cells

By Amir Bidhendi and Anja Geitmann


Plant cells come in a striking variety of different shapes. Shape formation in plant cells is controlled through modulation of the cell wall polymers and propelled by the turgor pressure. Understanding the shaping aspects of plant cells requires knowledge of the molecular players and the biophysical conditions under which they operate. Mechanical modeling has emerged as a useful tool to correlate cell wall structure, composition and mechanics to cell and organ shape. The finite element method is a powerful numerical approach employed to solve problems in continuum mechanics. This Update critically analyzes studies that have used finite element analysis for mechanical modeling of plant cells. Focus is on models involving single cell morphogenesis or motion. Model design, validation and predictive power are analyzed in detail to open future avenues in the field

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