Home > News > Dr. M. Shane Hutson to give seminar March 29, 2018

Dr. M. Shane Hutson to give seminar March 29, 2018

Nancy Davis • DATE: March 21, 2018

Dr. M. Shane Hutson to give seminar March 29, 2018

Prof. M.Shane Hutson

The Bioengineering Program, co-sponsored by the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering,  present:

Professor of Physics and of Biological Sciences
Chair, Department of Physics & Astronomy
Vanderbilt University


Date: Thursday, March 29, 2018
Time: 11:30 am to 12:30 pm (Coffee and tea served at 11:10 am)


TimeLapse-HutsonFor epithelial cells to heal a wound, those cells must first become aware of the presence, location, and size of the wound. This knowledge must be shared by cells in direct contact with the wound and those much further away, the latter of which must be recruited by some sort of mechanical or biochemical signal. We have investigated these signaling mechanisms using the exquisite spatial and temporal control afforded by laser-induced microsurgical wounds. One of the first signals observed after wounding epithelial tissues is a cytoplasmic influx of Ca2+ ions. This signal begins within milliseconds of wounding, expands outwards in multiple stages over the course of seconds to minutes, and finally devolves into localized signal flares that continue for hours as the wound closes. We will delineate what we have learned from visualizing, quantifying and modeling these signal dynamics and the physical and molecular mechanisms that drive them.


Shane Hutson is a Professor of Physics with a secondary appointment in Biological Sciences and currently serves as Chair of the Department of Physics & Astronomy. He previously served as Director of the College of Arts & Science’s Program in Career Development. His research is highly interdisciplinary – collaborating with biologists, chemists, physicians, and engineers – and focuses on laser-tissue interactions, on understanding the role of cellular mechanics in morphogenesis, and on the systems biology of environmental toxicology. He is also a dedicated educator focused on the revamping of calculus-based introductory physics for pre-med and life science students.

Before coming to Vanderbilt, Professor Hutson’s training included undergraduate studies in physics at Wake Forest University, graduate studies in biophysics at the University of Virginia, and a postdoctoral fellowship in biological physics at the Duke University Free Electron Laser Laboratory.