About BarrierForce

BarrierForce is an Academy of Finland Centre of Excellence (CoE; 2022 – 2029). We combine expertise from five different groups, based in Turku and Helsinki, to understand how tissue barriers formed by endothelial, epithelial and keratinocyte cell layers perform their protective roles and how these are disrupted in disease. We aim to provide a comprehensive overview of barrier physiology and pathology across different scales (molecules – cells – tissues) with the ultimate goal of finding therapeutic strategies.

WE ARE RECRUITING! Aspiring postdocs and PhD students are encouraged to send open applications to the Centre's PIs. Contact emails can be found on "meet the PIs" page. 

Tools at our disposal

At the molecular scale

Molecular simulation

Atomistic  molecular dynamics simulation (500 ns) revealing how actin-binding protein cofilin associates with the plasma membrane. Work from the Lappalainen and Vattulainen labs. See also Senju et al., 2017, PNAS.

Super-resolution insight

iPALM imaging of kank-1 z-distribution in the large focal adhesions of a hPS cell. Kank is in green and paxilin in red. Movie from the Ivaska lab, adapted from Stubb et al., 2019, Nat Commun.

At the cellular scale

Stretch on the nucleus

EM tomography showing the 3D chromatin ultrastructure of a cell in response to stretch. Condensed chromatin is labeled in purple and the nuclear envelope in yellow. Movie from the Wickström lab, adapted from Nava et al., 2020 Cell.

At the tissue scale

Vascular leakage

Evans Blue leakage (with colour coding) from blood vessels in intact ear mouse skin, imaged using multiphoton microscope. Work from the Saharinen lab.