Send to

Choose Destination
Matrix Biol. 2006 Mar;25(2):94-103. Epub 2005 Dec 5.

Relationships between tissue dilatation and differentiation in distraction osteogenesis.

Author information

Biomechanical Engineering Division, Mechanical Engineering Department, Durand Building, Room 215, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305, USA.


Mechanical factors modulate the morphogenesis and regeneration of mesenchymally derived tissues via processes mediated by the extracellular matrix (ECM). In distraction osteogenesis, large volumes of new bone are created through discrete applications of tensile displacement across an osteotomy gap. Although many studies have characterized the matrix, cellular and molecular biology of distraction osteogenesis, little is known about relationships between these biological phenomena and the local physical cues generated by distraction. Accordingly, the goal of this study was to characterize the local physical environment created within the osteotomy gap during long bone distraction osteogenesis. Using a computational approach, we quantified spatial and temporal profiles of three previously identified mechanical stimuli for tissue differentiation-pressure, tensile strain and fluid flow-as well as another candidate stimulus-tissue dilatation (volumetric strain). Whereas pressure and fluid velocity throughout the regenerate decayed to less than 31% of initial values within 20 min following distraction, tissue dilatation increased with time, reaching steady state values as high as 43% strain. This dilatation created large reductions and large gradients in cell and ECM densities. When combined with previous findings regarding the effects of strain and of cell and ECM densities on cell migration, proliferation and differentiation, these results indicate two mechanisms by which tissue dilatation may be a key stimulus for bone regeneration: (1) stretching of cells and (2) altering cell and ECM densities. These results are used to suggest experiments that can provide a more mechanistic understanding of the role of tissue dilatation in bone regeneration.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center