Send to

Choose Destination
Bone. 2013 Jun;54(2):182-90. doi: 10.1016/j.bone.2012.10.013. Epub 2012 Oct 18.

Mechanosensation and transduction in osteocytes.

Author information

Department of Oral Cell Biology, ACTA-VU University Amsterdam, Research Institute MOVE, Gustav Mahlerlaan 3004, 1081 LA Amsterdam, The Netherlands.


The human skeleton is a miracle of engineering, combining both toughness and light weight. It does so because bones possess cellular mechanisms wherein external mechanical loads are sensed. These mechanical loads are transformed into biological signals, which ultimately direct bone formation and/or bone resorption. Osteocytes, since they are ubiquitous in the mineralized matrix, are the cells that sense mechanical loads and transduce the mechanical signals into a chemical response. The osteocytes then release signaling molecules, which orchestrate the recruitment and activity of osteoblasts or osteoclasts, resulting in the adaptation of bone mass and structure. In this review, we highlight current insights in bone adaptation to external mechanical loading, with an emphasis on how a mechanical load placed on whole bones is translated and amplified into a mechanical signal that is subsequently sensed by the osteocytes.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Elsevier Science
Loading ...
Support Center