2021 Volume 16 Issue 1 Pages 20-00516
The cerebellum has a unique morphology characterized by fine folds called folia. During cerebellar morphogenesis, folia formation (foliation) proceeds with granule cell (GC) proliferation in an external granular layer, and subsequent cell migration to an internal granular layer (IGL). GC migration is guided along Bergmann glial (BG) fibers, whose orientation depends on the deformation of cerebellar tissue during folia formation. The aim of this study is to investigate the contribution of the fiber-guided GC migration on folia formation from a mechanical viewpoint. Based on a continuum mechanics model of cerebellar tissue deformation and GC dynamics, we simulated foliation process caused by GC proliferation and migration. By changing migration speeds, we showed that the fiber-guided GC migration caused the non-uniform accumulation of GCs and folia lengthening. Furthermore, the simulation of impaired GC migration under pathological conditions, where GCs did not migrate along BG fibers, revealed that fiber-guided GC migration was necessary for folia lengthening. These simulation results successfully recapitulated the features of physiological and pathological foliation processes and validated the mechanisms that guidance of GC migration by BG fibers causes folia lengthening accompanied by non-uniform IGL. Our computational approach will help us understand biological and physical morphogenesis mechanisms, facilitated by interactions between cellular activities and tissue behaviors.