Both mechanical load and elevated levels of proinflammatory cytokines have been associated with the risk for developing osteoarthritis (OA), yet the potential interaction of these mechanical and biological factors is not well understood. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the response of chondrocytes to the effects of dynamic unconfined compression, TNF-α, and the simultaneous effects of dynamic unconfined compression and TNF-α. The response to these three treatments was markedly different and, taken together, the response in the gene expression of chondrocytes to the different treatment conditions suggest a complex interaction between structure, biology, and mechanical loading.

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