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  • Open Access


    Effects of Simulated Microgravity on Vascular Development in Zebrafish

    XiangXie1,a, Deng Liu1,a, Daoxi Lei1, Yongfei Liu1, Qi Wang1, Zaien Wen1, Juhui Qiu1, Dongyu Jia1,2, Hans Gregersen1, Guixue Wang1,*

    Molecular & Cellular Biomechanics, Vol.14, No.3, pp. 171-186, 2017, DOI:10.3970/mcb.2017.014.171

    Abstract Research in microgravity is of utmost importance for disclosing the impact of gravity on biological processes and organisms. With the development of space technology, scientists pay more attention to cardiovascular diseases associated with microgravity. However, up to date only sparse data exist on microgravity and cardiovascular development mechanisms. In this study, zebrafish was chosen as the model organism. Zebrafish embryos were exposed to microgravity using a ground-based simulation microgravity (SM) bioreactor. The effects of SM on the development of early embryonic vascular system were studied in vivo in real-time. Zebrafish embryos were selected and divided… More >

  • Open Access


    Mesoscopic Biochemical Basis of Isogenetic Inheritance and Canalization: Stochasticity, Nonlinearity, and Emergent Landscape

    Hong Qian, Hao Ge

    Molecular & Cellular Biomechanics, Vol.9, No.1, pp. 1-30, 2012, DOI:10.3970/mcb.2012.009.001

    Abstract Biochemical reaction systems in mesoscopic volume, under sustained environmental chemical gradient(s), can have multiple stochastic attractors. Two distinct mechanisms are known for their origins: (a) Stochastic single-molecule events, such as gene expression, with slow gene on-off dynamics; and (b) nonlinear networks with feedbacks. These two mechanisms yield different volume dependence for the sojourn time of an attractor. As in the classic Arrhenius theory for temperature dependent transition rates, a landscape perspective provides a natural framework for the system's behavior. However, due to the nonequilibrium nature of the open chemical systems, the landscape, and the attractors More >

  • Open Access


    Hypertrophic Gene Expression Induced by Chronic Stretch of Excised Mouse Heart Muscle

    Anna M. Raskin∗,†, Masahiko Hoshijima, Eric Swanson, Andrew D. McCulloch*, Jeffrey H. Omens∗,†,‡

    Molecular & Cellular Biomechanics, Vol.6, No.3, pp. 145-160, 2009, DOI:10.3970/mcb.2009.006.145

    Abstract Altered mechanical stress and strain in cardiac myocytes induce modifications in gene expression that affects cardiac remodeling and myocyte contractile function. To study the mechanisms of mechanotransduction in cardiomyocytes, probing alterations in mechanics and gene expression has been an effective strategy. However, previous studies are self-limited due to the general use of isolated neonatal rodent myocytes or intact animals. The main goal of this study was to develop a novel tissue culture chamber system for mouse myocardium that facilitates loading of cardiac tissue, while measuring tissue stress and deformation within a physiological environment. Intact mouse… More >

  • Open Access


    Role of Shear Stress Direction in Endothelial Mechanotransduction

    Shu Chien*

    Molecular & Cellular Biomechanics, Vol.5, No.1, pp. 1-8, 2008, DOI:10.3970/mcb.2008.005.001

    Abstract Fluid shear stress due to blood flow can modulate functions of endothelial cells (ECs) in blood vessels by activating mechano-sensors, signaling pathways, and gene and protein expressions. Laminar shear stress with a definite forward direction causes transient activations of many genes that are atherogenic, followed by their down-regulation; laminar shear stress also up-regulates genes that inhibit EC growth. In contrast, disturbed flow patterns with little forward direction cause sustained activations of these atherogenic genes and enhancements of EC mitosis and apoptosis. In straight parts of the arterial tree, laminar shear stress with a definite forward More >

  • Open Access


    Focal Adhesion Kinase Signaling Controls Cyclic Tensile Strain Enhanced Collagen I-Induced Osteogenic Differentiation of Human Mesenchymal Stem Cells

    Donald F. Ward Jr.*, William A. Williams*, Nicole E. Schapiro*, Samuel R. Christy*, Genevieve L. Weber*, Megan Salt, Robert F. Klees*, Adele Boskey, George E. Plopper ∗,‡

    Molecular & Cellular Biomechanics, Vol.4, No.4, pp. 177-188, 2007, DOI:10.3970/mcb.2007.004.177

    Abstract Focal adhesion kinase (FAK) is a key integrator of integrin-mediated signals from the extracellular matrix to the cytoskeleton and downstream signaling molecules. FAK is activated by phosphorylation at specific tyrosine residues, which then stimulate downstream signaling including the ERK1/2 pathway, leading to a variety of cellular responses. In this study, we examined the effects of FAK point mutations at tyrosine residues (Y397, Y925, Y861, and Y576/7) on osteogenic differentiation of human mesenchymal stem cells exposed to collagen I and cyclic tensile strain. Our results demonstrate that FAK signaling emanating from Y397, Y925, and to a More >

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