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Bio-mimicking Shear Stress Environments for Enhancing Mesenchymal Stem Cell Differentiation

[ Vol. 15 , Issue. 5 ]

Author(s):

Seep Arora, Akshaya Srinivasan, Chak Ming Leung and Yi-Chin Toh*   Pages 414 - 427 ( 14 )

Abstract:


Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) are multipotent stromal cells, with the ability to differentiate into mesodermal (e.g., adipocyte, chondrocyte, hematopoietic, myocyte, osteoblast), ectodermal (e.g., epithelial, neural) and endodermal (e.g., hepatocyte, islet cell) lineages based on the type of induction cues provided. As compared to embryonic stem cells, MSCs hold a multitude of advantages from a clinical translation perspective, including ease of isolation, low immunogenicity and limited ethical concerns. Therefore, MSCs are a promising stem cell source for different regenerative medicine applications. The in vitro differentiation of MSCs into different lineages relies on effective mimicking of the in vivo milieu, including both biochemical and mechanical stimuli. As compared to other biophysical cues, such as substrate stiffness and topography, the role of fluid shear stress (SS) in regulating MSC differentiation has been investigated to a lesser extent although the role of interstitial fluid and vascular flow in regulating the normal physiology of bone, muscle and cardiovascular tissues is well-known. This review aims to summarise the current state-of-the-art regarding the role of SS in the differentiation of MSCs into osteogenic, cardiovascular, chondrogenic, adipogenic and neurogenic lineages. We will also highlight and discuss the potential of employing SS to augment the differentiation of MSCs to other lineages, where SS is known to play a role physiologically but has not yet been successfully harnessed for in vitro differentiation, including liver, kidney and corneal tissue lineage cells. The incorporation of SS, in combination with biochemical and biophysical cues during MSC differentiation, may provide a promising avenue to improve the functionality of the differentiated cells by more closely mimicking the in vivo milieu.

Keywords:

Mesenchymal stem cells, shear stress, mechanical stimulus, differentiation, biomimicking, microenvironmental cues.

Affiliation:

Department of Biomedical Engineering, National University of Singapore, 21 Lower Kent Ridge Rd, 117583, Department of Biomedical Engineering, National University of Singapore, 21 Lower Kent Ridge Rd, 117583, Department of Biomedical Engineering, National University of Singapore, 21 Lower Kent Ridge Rd, 117583, Department of Biomedical Engineering, National University of Singapore, 21 Lower Kent Ridge Rd, 117583



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