Influence of cyclic hydrostatic pressure on fibrocartilaginous metaplasia of achilles tendon fibroblasts

Biomech Model Mechanobiol. 2006 Nov;5(4):247-52. doi: 10.1007/s10237-005-0013-y. Epub 2006 Jan 17.


The goal of this study was to demonstrate whether cyclically imposed hydrostatic pressure, compressive in nature, could induce fibrocartilaginous metaplasia in a purely tendinous cell source in vitro. The effect of short-duration cyclic hydrostatic pressure on tendon fibroblasts (tenocytes) expanded from rat Achilles tendon was studied. Total RNA was isolated either immediately after loading or 24 h later. The mRNA expression of tendon and cartilage specific markers - Collagen types I and II, Sox9, and Aggrecan was quantified by real-time reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction over multiple biological samples (n=6). For immediately isolated RNA samples, there were statistically significant increases in mRNA expression of Aggrecan and Collagen type II, while Collagen type I significantly decreased. Noticeably, for RNA samples isolated 24 h later, there were further increases in mRNA expression of Aggrecan and Collagen type II, whereas Collagen type I increased roughly three-fold relative to the non-loaded control. These findings support the hypothesis that cyclic hydrostatic pressurization can induce fibrocartilaginous metaplasia in tenocytes by upregulation of cartilaginous gene expression. Also, it was demonstrated that changes in mRNA expression as a result of single 2 h pressurization persist even up to 24 h.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Achilles Tendon / cytology*
  • Achilles Tendon / pathology*
  • Aggrecans / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Animals, Newborn
  • Biomarkers / metabolism
  • Cell Culture Techniques
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Collagen Type I / metabolism
  • Collagen Type II / metabolism
  • Fibroblasts / pathology*
  • Fibroblasts / physiology*
  • High Mobility Group Proteins / metabolism
  • Hydrostatic Pressure
  • Male
  • Metaplasia
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • SOX9 Transcription Factor
  • Time Factors
  • Transcription Factors / metabolism


  • Aggrecans
  • Biomarkers
  • Collagen Type I
  • Collagen Type II
  • High Mobility Group Proteins
  • RNA, Messenger
  • SOX9 Transcription Factor
  • Transcription Factors