Unconfined cyclic compressive loading has been shown to promote the chondrogenic differentiation of agarose encapsulated mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) in the absence of chondrogenic growth factors [1, 2]. However, in general robust chondrogenesis has not been reported as a result of mechanical stimulation alone; with biochemical stimulation through TGF-β supplementation yielding a more potent pro-chondrogenic effect [2, 3].

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