Modelling Oscillator Synchronisation During Vertebrate Axis Segmentation
The somitogenesis clock regulates the periodicity with which somites form in the posterior pre-somitic mesoderm. Whilst cell heterogeneity results in noisy oscillation rates amongst constituent cells, synchrony within the population is maintained as oscillators are entrained via juxtracine signalling mechanisms. Here we consider a population of phase-coupled oscillators and investigate how biologically motivated perturbations to the entrained state can perturb synchrony within the population. We find that the ratio of mitosis length to clock period can influence levels of desynchronisation. Moreover, we observe that random cell movement, and hence change of local neighbourhoods, increases synchronisation.
PJM and REB acknowledge the support of the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council through an EPSRC First Grant to REB. PKM was partially supported by a Royal Society-Wolfson Research Merit Award.
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