Native fibrous tissues contain complex anisotropic matrices. This results in essential direction-dependent mechanical properties, primarily originating from the fibrillar collagen. When engineering fibrous tissues in vitro, matrix anisotropy is crucial for in vivo functionality and durability. However, it is not fully understood how to guide, maintain and control matrix anisotropy. Cell traction and associated cell orientation may contribute significantly to collagen orientation. Therefore, the ability to manipulate cell orientation may be essential to develop a preferred matrix anisotropy for tissue engineering applications.

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