Numerical assessment on the effective mechanical stimuli for matrix-associated metabolism in chondrocyte-seeded constructs

Tasci, Arzu; Ferguson, Stephen; Büchler, Philippe (2011). Numerical assessment on the effective mechanical stimuli for matrix-associated metabolism in chondrocyte-seeded constructs. Journal of tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, 5(3), 210--9. Chichester: John Wiley & Sons 10.1002/term.307

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The self-regeneration capacity of articular cartilage is limited, due to its avascular and aneural nature. Loaded explants and cell cultures demonstrated that chondrocyte metabolism can be regulated via physiologic loading. However, the explicit ranges of mechanical stimuli that correspond to favourable metabolic response associated with extracellular matrix (ECM) synthesis are elusive. Unsystematic protocols lacking this knowledge produce inconsistent results. This study aims to determine the intrinsic ranges of physical stimuli that increase ECM synthesis and simultaneously inhibit nitric oxide (NO) production in chondrocyte-agarose constructs, by numerically re-evaluating the experiments performed by Tsuang et al. (2008). Twelve loading patterns were simulated with poro-elastic finite element models in ABAQUS. Pressure on solid matrix, von Mises stress, maximum principle stress and pore pressure were selected as intrinsic mechanical stimuli. Their development rates and magnitudes at the steady state of cyclic loading were calculated with MATLAB at the construct level. Concurrent increase in glycosaminoglycan and collagen was observed at 2300 Pa pressure and 40 Pa/s pressure rate. Between 0-1500 Pa and 0-40 Pa/s, NO production was consistently positive with respect to controls, whereas ECM synthesis was negative in the same range. A linear correlation was found between pressure rate and NO production (R = 0.77). Stress states identified in this study are generic and could be used to develop predictive algorithms for matrix production in agarose-chondrocyte constructs of arbitrary shape, size and agarose concentration. They could also be helpful to increase the efficacy of loading protocols for avascular tissue engineering. Copyright (c) 2010 John Wiley \& Sons, Ltd.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Pre-clinic Human Medicine > Institute for Surgical Technology & Biomechanics ISTB [discontinued]

UniBE Contributor:

Tasci, Arzu Gül, Ferguson, Stephen John, Büchler, Philippe




John Wiley & Sons




Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 14:16

Last Modified:

05 Dec 2022 14:04

Publisher DOI:


Web of Science ID:


URI: (FactScience: 209236)

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