Mechanics of Blastocyst Morphogenesis

Biol Cell. 2017 Sep;109(9):323-338. doi: 10.1111/boc.201700029. Epub 2017 Aug 4.


During pre-implantation development, the mammalian zygote transforms into the blastocyst, the structure that will implant the embryo in the maternal uterus. Consisting of a squamous epithelium enveloping a fluid-filled cavity and the inner cell mass, the blastocyst is sculpted by a succession of morphogenetic events. These deformations result from the changes in the forces and mechanical properties of the tissue composing the embryo. Here, I review the recent studies, which, for the first time, informed us on the mechanics of blastocyst morphogenesis.

Keywords: Cell adhesion; Cytoskeleton; Development; Mammals.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biomechanical Phenomena
  • Blastocyst / cytology*
  • Cell Lineage
  • Epithelium / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Morphogenesis*
  • Morula / cytology