Fibres in living cells carry the pre-existing tension (so-called prestress) even without external loading. By changing the prestress, cells are able to control actively their overall mechanical response; it is therefore an important element in cell elasticity. To capture this feature, we propose the hyperelastic model of living tissues composed of balls and springs. The prestress in fibres is maintained due to the assumption of the constant volume of cells (it does not allow the springs to relax). Even if the structure is simple, the determination of reference configuration leads to non-unique solutions and bifurcations.
prestress, volume regulation, living tissue, Young’s modulus