Abstract: Background: Traction Force Microscopy (TFM) is a widespread technique to estimate the tractions that cells exert on the surrounding substrate. To recover the tractions, it is necessary to solve an inverse problem, which is ill-posed and needs regularization to make the solution stable. The typical regularization scheme is given by the minimization of a cost functional, which is divided in two terms: the error present in the data or data fidelity term; and the regularization or penalty term. The classical approach is to use zero-order Tikhonov or L2-regularization, which uses the L2-norm for both terms in the cost function. Recently, some studies have demonstrated an improved performance using L1-regularization (L1-norm in the penalty term) related to an increase in the spatial resolution and sensitivity of the recovered traction field. In this manuscript, we present a comparison between the previous two regularization schemes (relying in the L2-norm for the data fidelity term) and the full L1-regularization (using the L1-norm for both terms in the cost function) for synthetic and real data.
Biology and Biomedicine
traction force microscopy; spatial domain; regularization; spatial resolution