Mechanical stimuli are known to regulate the morphology and differentiated function of connective tissue cells. In particular, hydrostatic pressure has been reported to alter cytoskeletal organization in osteoblast-like cells (1) and chondrocytes (2), and to modulate metabolic activity in both chondrocytes (3–5) and intervertebral disc cells (6). The cellular response to continuous hydrostatic pressure is generally catabolic (3) while intermittent hydrostatic pressure at frequencies ranging from 0.25–1.0 Hz (3–5) is anabolic, giving rise to increased expression and biosynthesis of extracellular matrix (ECM) components. Previously, human dermal fibroblasts in monolayer culture were shown to respond to hydrostatic pressure by increasing heat shock protein expression levels (7). In this study, we characterize the effects of intermittent hydrostatic pressure on gene expression in human dermal fibroblasts seeded in three-dimensional polymer scaffolds.

This content is only available via PDF.
You do not currently have access to this content.