Event Type:

Department Colloquium

Date/Time:

Wednesday, May 13, 2009 - 05:00

Location:

Kidder 364

Guest Speaker:

Institution:

Technical University of Munich, Germany

Abstract:

Stem cell research is one of the most active and popular fields in biomedicine. In spite of impressive success in the past years there are still many questions completely open. Mathematics can make contributions to solve at least partially some of the urgent problems. We will consider two particular aspects in this context:i) preservation of stem cells, and ii) differentiation of stem cells.

Normally stem cells will be harvested at some time for later use. In the meantime they will be deeply frozen and defrosted when they are needed again. The process of freezing and defrosting must be carefully controlled in order to prevent the cells from being destroyed. From mathematical point of view this leads to the treatment of a Stefan like problem for the PDEs. We will analyze the problem and simulate the solution numerically.

The stem cells which we have in mind are still pluripotent. When placing them into a specified neighborhood they become more diversified. We propose a mathematical model which is able to describe this process in part at least. Our model is based on physical-chemical principles of thermodynamics. The model will be analyzed in theory and numerical simulation.