Main focus of my group is developing continuum theory (mechanics and thermodynamics) based models and perform experiments to elucidate the role of cell membrane and its mechanical properties in various cell-biological processes. Membranes in a cell are primarily made of lipid bilayer. Understanding the role of lipid bilayer in the functionality of animal cells is key towards the knowhow of fundamental cell biological processes. It is believed that the membrane actively controls its curvature and composition to influence cellular processes such as signaling between proteins, sorting of proteins and lipids, adhesion.
One of the key questions in biology is how the complex shapes in organelle such as Golgi network and endoplasmic reticulum are generated and maintained, and how they relate to cell function? Several membrane bound proteins are known to actively participate in generating, regulating and sensing membrane curvature. We have developed mechanics-thermodynamics based models for such curvature sorting of proteins in a biophysical system consisting of a cylindrical membrane tube connected to a giant lipid bilayer vesicle.
Mechanical properties of a membrane play key role in processes such as adhesion and motion of microdomains in lipid bilayer. An important question in mechanics is how adhesion influences the physical behavior of thin structures like vesicles and cells. We will be developing a paradigm for modeling adhesion of soft structures that can deform and rotate by large amounts. Our study will find use in many other areas such as contact of polymers, thin optical fibers, design of novel adhesives.
Apart from the membrane mechanics research, I am also involved in collaborative studies on the parametric instability of cylindrical shells, low velocity impact on a layered composite films made of soft and stiff layers, standing waves in tires and inextensional vibration of carbon nanotubes using nonlocal elasticity theories.
Generation of Wavy Structure on Lipid Membrane by Peripheral Proteins: A Linear Elastic Analysis by Mahata P., Das S. L. FEBS Letters - (Accepted/In-Press)
Effect of radial loads on the natural frequencies of thin-walled circular cylindrical shells by Kumar A., Das S. L., Wahi P. International Journal of Mechanical Sciences 122 37-52 (2017)
Diffusion mediated coagulation and fragmentation based study of domain formation in lipid bilayer membrane by V L. R., Roy S. , Das S. L. Physica B 505 74-83 (2017)
Polygonal deformation of a metallic foil subjected to impact by an axisymmetric indenter by Mohanty D. P., V. L. R., Das S. L., Ghatak A. Journal of Adhesion Science and Technology 31 1647-1657 (2017)
Structure-induced nonlinear viscoelasticity of non-woven fibrous matrices by Rizvi M. S., Pal A. , Das S. L. Biomechanics and Modeling in Mechanobiology 15 1641-1654 (2016)
Adhesion of Soft and Thin Structures ISIRD, SRIC
Ananta Kumar Nayak
Area of Research: Solid Mechanics