Professor of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering, College of Engineering
Office: 147 Multidisciplinary Research Building
Adult multipotent stromal cells (MSC’s), sometimes called mesenchymal stem cells, produce the cell populations that construct bone cartilage and fat in the body. Like most cells, MSC’s respond to physical stimuli, such as stretching or pressure. When in there natural environment, the bone marrow within trabecular bone, stem cells are subjected to a myriad of loads due to normal daily activities, and these loads may influence the reproduction and health of the cells and their eventual commitment to formation of new tissues.
Little is known about the mechanical environment of the stem cell within the bone marrow. However, using standard engineering methodologies, Prof. Glen Niebur and his team can now compute the mechanical environment to the level of a small group of cells within a region of bone. By comparing these computations with controlled experimental conditions and assessment of cell behavior, it may be possible to gain a new understanding of the effects of daily activities on the stem cell environment.
Would you like to support Prof. Niebur’s Research?