Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering

Degree Level



Chemical Engineering


Nayani, Karthik

Committee Member/Reader

Walker, Heather

Committee Member/Second Reader

Almodovar, Jorge

Committee Member/Third Reader

Walters, Keisha


In this research project, induced mechanical stress on the cell nucleus via synthetic liquid crystals (LCs) was explored. Points of interest were the shape alterations and distortions of the nuclear envelope under strain, providing insight into the mechanics and stiffness of the cell nuclei. LCs are substances with structure and fluidity, and LCs in the nematic phase are aligned in a single direction without layers, inducing shear stress on inclusions. This study confirmed that an aqueous solution of 17.3 wt% disodium cromoglycate (DSCG) can successfully strain the nuclei of chicken red blood cells (RBCs) by examining the nuclear response to dispersion in the LC solution. Bisbenzimide dye was used to stain the cell nucleus for fluorescent microscopy. The nuclear envelope shape response of an RBC was indicative of strain applied and was analyzed both quantitatively and qualitatively. Although this study only utilized this specific type of cell, the methods and techniques used can be extended to alternative mammalian cells and regulatory system observations. The techniques used in this study can contribute to the diagnosis and study of diseases that affect the stiffness of cell nuclei.


liquid crystals, cell nucleus, chicken red blood cells, cell behavior, shear stress, bisbenzimide

Available for download on Saturday, April 26, 2025