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J Physiol. 2019 Mar;597(5):1283-1298. doi: 10.1113/JP275450. Epub 2018 Jul 19.

The impact of loading, unloading, ageing and injury on the human tendon.

Author information

1
Institute of Sports Medicine Copenhagen, Bispebjerg Hospital, Copenhagen, NV.
2
Department of Physical and Occupational Therapy Bispebjerg Hospital, Copenhagen, NV.
3
Center for Healthy Aging, Department of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen N, Denmark.

Abstract

A tendon transfers force from the contracting muscle to the skeletal system to produce movement and is therefore a crucial component of the entire muscle-tendon complex and its function. However, tendon research has for some time focused on mechanical properties without any major appreciation of potential cellular and molecular changes. At the same time, methodological developments have permitted determination of the mechanical properties of human tendons in vivo, which was previously not possible. Here we review the current understanding of how tendons respond to loading, unloading, ageing and injury from cellular, molecular and mechanical points of view. A mechanistic understanding of tendon tissue adaptation will be vital for development of adequate guidelines in physical training and rehabilitation, as well as for optimal injury treatment.

KEYWORDS:

collagen; extracellular matrix; tendon fibroblasts; tendon structure; viscoelastic properties

PMID:
29920664
PMCID:
PMC6395417
[Available on 2020-03-01]
DOI:
10.1113/JP275450

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