HYBRID: Chemically Active Wetting

A lecture in the "Physics & Pizza" series (held in English)

Mo, 09.10.2023 18:15  –   Mo, 09.10.2023 19:15
Dr. Susanne Liese, Institut für Physik, Universität Augsburg
Magnus-Haus Berlin
Am Kupfergraben 7, 10117 Berlin, Germany

also to be followed ONLINE
Registration required
Contact person:
Andreas Böttcher, , 030/201748-0
External Link:
request for access to online streaming


This lecture will be held in presence at Magnus-Haus and can be followed online at the same time. Use the links above to register your attendance in person on site or to receive access data for online attendance. No admission after the start of the event. Please do not participate if you have symptoms of a respiratory infection (cold symptoms).

Topic: Understanding wetting behavior in cellular compartments is of paramount importance as it plays a pivotal role in various biological processes. The ability of protein droplets to wet specific target sites on cellular surfaces, locally enriching biomolecules, underscores the significance of wetting phenomena in living cells. These processes, governed by non-equilibrium thermodynamics, are essential for cell compartmentalization and biochemical reactions. In this talk, we delve into the theoretical physics behind active wetting, exploring how it alters wetting behavior and leads to non-equilibrium steady states with intriguing condensate shapes akin to pancakes or mushrooms. Drawing an electrostatic analogy, we reveal the underlying mechanisms, where binding dynamics are likened to electrostatic dipoles. This analogy suggests a general analogy between chemically active systems and electrodynamics.

CV: Dr. Susanne Liese utilizes methods from statistical physics and numerical modeling to investigate questions at the intersection of physics, biology, and chemistry. Her research interests encompass multivalent ligand-receptor binding and cell compartmentalization. Her current research as a post-doctoral fellow at Universität Augsburg in the group of Prof. Christoph Weber, focuses on the wetting behavior of protein coacervates. Previously, she conducted research at the Max Planck Institute for the Physics of Complex Systems, University of Oslo, and at Freie Universität Berlin, where she received her PhD in 2017 under the supervision of Prof. Roland Netz.

Following the lecture, there will be a get-together where participants can exchange ideas with each other over pizza and drinks in the Remise and the garden of the Magnus-Haus.

The event is sponsored by the Wilhelm and Else Heraeus Foundation.