Modelling collective cell motion: Are on- And off-lattice models equivalent?: Equivalent on- And off-lattice models

Josué Manik Nava-Sedeño, Anja Voß-Böhme, Haralampos Hatzikirou, Andreas Deutsch, Fernando Peruani

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Biological processes, such as embryonic development, wound repair and cancer invasion, or bacterial swarming and fruiting body formation, involve collective motion of cells as a coordinated group. Collective cell motion of eukaryotic cells often includes interactions that result in polar alignment of cell velocities, while bacterial patterns typically show features of apolar velocity alignment. For analysing the population-scale effects of these different alignment mechanisms, various on- and off-lattice agent-based models have been introduced. However, discriminating model-specific artefacts from general features of collective cell motion is challenging. In this work, we focus on equivalence criteria at the population level to compare on- and off-lattice models. In particular, we define prototypic off- and on-lattice models of polar and apolar alignment, and show how to obtain an on-lattice from an off-lattice model of velocity alignment. By characterizing the behaviour and dynamical description of collective migration models at the macroscopic level, we suggest the type of phase transitions and possible patterns in the approximative macroscopic partial differential equation descriptions as informative equivalence criteria between on- and off-lattice models. This article is part of the theme issue 'Multi-scale analysis and modelling of collective migration in biological systems'.

Original languageBritish English
Article number20190378
JournalPhilosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Issue number1807
StatePublished - 14 Sep 2020


  • alignment interactions
  • cellular automata
  • collective motion
  • off-lattice model
  • on-lattice model


Dive into the research topics of 'Modelling collective cell motion: Are on- And off-lattice models equivalent?: Equivalent on- And off-lattice models'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this