Welcome to the Universality in Biology Group website. We are based in the Department of Bioengineering at Imperial College London. We employ tools of statistical mechanics, soft condensed matter physics, applied mathematics, and computation methods to study universal behaviour in biological systems. Specific examples include protein amyloid self-assembly, cytoplasmic pattern formation, tissue homeostasis, and collective behaviour in living organisms. Our work is typically performed in close collaboration with experimental biologists.

Recent conference organisation

Organiser of the Fluids Summer School 2018: 'Current topics in active fluids: Theory and Experiments' to be held at Imperial College London on July 16-20, 2018 [Poster]

Co-organiser of Field theories come to Life held at Imperial College London on April 9, 2018

Organiser of the CoSyDy meeting on 'Non-equilibrium polymer dynamics' held at Imperial College London on 26 June, 2017

Recent review
L. Hong, C.F. Lee and Y.J. Huang (2017)
Statistical Mechanics and Kinetics of Amyloid Fibrillation. Biophysics and biochemistry of protein aggregation, edited by J.-M. Yuan and H.-X. Zhou (World Scientific), chapter 4; E-print: arxiv:1609.01569.

Selected recent papers
L. Chen, C.F. Lee and J. Toner
Incompressible polar active fluids in the moving phase. E-print: arXiv:1806.02548
L. Chen, C.F. Lee and J. Toner
Squeezed in three dimensions, moving in two: Hydrodynamic theory of 3D incompressible easy-plane polar active fluids. E-print: arXiv:1805.07930
C.F. Lee
Thermalization kinetics of self-assembling, semi-flexible polymers. E-print:
J.D. Wurtz and C.F. Lee (2018)
Stress granule formation via ATP depletion-triggered phase separation. New Journal of Physics 20 045008. E-print: arXiv:1708.05697
J.D. Wurtz and C.F. Lee (2018)
Chemical reaction-controlled phase separated drops: Formation, size selection, and coarsening. Physical Review Letters 120, 078102. E-print:
D. Nesbitt, G. Pruessner and C.F. Lee (2017)
Edge instability in incompressible planar active fluids. Physical Review E 96, 062615. E-print:
C.F. Lee (2017)
Interface stability, interface fluctuations, and the Gibbs-Thomson relation in motility-induced phase separations. Soft Matter 13, 376-385. E-print: arxiv:1503.08674.
L. Chen, C.F. Lee and J. Toner (2016)
Surprising mappings of 2D polar active fluids to 2D soap and 1D sandblasting. Nature Communications 7, 12215.
E-print: arxiv:1601.01924.
C.F. Lee and G. Pruessner (2016) [Editors' Suggestion]
Percolation with trapping mechanism drives active gels to the critically connected state.
Physical Review E 93, 052414. E-print: arxiv:1508.06771.

L. Chen, J. Toner and C.F. Lee (2015)
Critical Phenomenon of the Order-Disorder Transition in Incompressible Active Fluids. New Journal of Physics 17, 042002 (Fast Track Communication) [Video abstract].
E-print: arxiv:1410.2764.
C.F. Lee (2015)
Thermal breakage of a semi-flexible polymer: Breakage profile and rate.
Journal of Physics: Condensed Matter 27, 275101.