Tendon and ligament injuries account for ∼45% of the 32.8 million musculoskeletal injuries that occur in the US every year [1]. Natural adult healing of these injuries is often inadequate and can diminish the quality of life for the patient. Tissue engineers, including those in our lab, have attempted to augment the natural healing process through a variety of methods including mechanical simulation of tissue engineered constructs (TECs) to improve repair outcome [2]. Building on our successes with mechanical stimulation, we now seek to modulate genes expressed during normal development in our TECs in culture to improve repair outcome in vivo. An initial step in this process is to determine if our TECs express genes within pathways of normal tendon development.

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