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This content will become publicly available on February 12, 2025

Title: Microstructure‐based nuclear lamina constitutive model

The nuclear lamina is widely recognized as the most crucial component in providing mechanical stability to the nucleus. However, it is still a significant challenge to model the mechanics of this multilayered protein network. We developed a constitutive model of the nuclear lamina network based on its microstructure, which accounts for the deformation phases at the dimer level, as well as the orientational arrangement and density of lamin filaments. Instead of relying on homology modeling in the previous studies, we conducted molecular simulations to predict the force‐extension response of a highly accurate lamin dimer structure obtained through X‐ray diffraction crystallography experimentation. Furthermore, we devised a semiflexible worm‐like chain extension‐force model of lamin dimer as a substitute, incorporating phases of initial stretching, uncoiling of the dimer coiled‐coil, and transition of secondary structures. Subsequently, we developed a 2D network continuum model for the nuclear lamina by using our extension‐force lamin dimer model and derived stress resultants. By comparing with experimentally measured lamina modulus, we found that the lamina network has sharp initial strain‐hardening behavior. This also enabled us to carry out finite element simulations of the entire nucleus with an accurate microstructure‐based nuclear lamina model. Finally, we conducted simulations of transendothelial transmigration of a nucleus and investigated the impact of varying network density and uncoiling constants on the critical force required for successful transmigration. The model allows us to incorporate the microstructure characteristics of the nuclear lamina into the nucleus model, thereby gaining insights into how laminopathies and mutations affect nuclear mechanics.

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National Science Foundation
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