The influence of mechanical stretching on mitosis, growth, and adipose conversion in adipocyte cultures

Naama Shoham, Amit Gefen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The mechanotransduction of adipocytes is not well characterized in the literature. In this study, we employ stochastic modeling fitted to experiments for characterizing the influence of mechanical stretching delivered to adipocyte monolayers on the probabilities of commitment to the adipocyte lineage, mitosis, and growth after mitosis in 3T3-L1 adipocytes. We found that the probability of a cell to become committed to the adipocyte lineage in a single division when cultured on an elastic substrate was 0.025, which was indistinguishable between cultures that were radially stretched (to 12% strain) and control cultures. The probability of undergoing mitosis however was different between the groups, being 0.4 in the stretched cultures and 0.6 in the controls. The probability of growing after mitosis was affected by the stretching as well and was 0.9 and 0.8 in the stretched and control groups, respectively. We conclude that static stretching of the substrate of adipocyte cultures influences the mitotic potential of the cells as well as the growth potential post-mitosis. The present work provides better understanding of the mechanotransduction of adipocytes and in particular quantify how stretching influences the likelihood of cell proliferation and differentiation and, consequently, adipogenesis in the adipocyte cultures.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1029-1045
Number of pages17
JournalBiomechanics and Modeling in Mechanobiology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Sep 2012


  • 3T3-L1 preadipocytes
  • Differentiation
  • Lipid droplet
  • Tensile strain
  • Transition probability

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Biotechnology
  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Mechanical Engineering


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