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Stem cell differentiation

Post-degradation forces kick in


Stem cells alter their morphology and differentiate to particular lineages in response to biophysical cues from the surrounding matrix. When the matrix is degradable, however, cell fate is morphology-independent and is directed by the traction forces that the cells actively apply after they have degraded the matrix.

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Figure 1: Degradable hydrogels stimulate osteogenic differentiation of mesenchymal stem cells2.
Figure 2: Cell-mediated reorganization of matrix-bound ligands.


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Correspondence to Adam J. Engler.

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Vincent, L., Engler, A. Post-degradation forces kick in. Nature Mater 12, 384–386 (2013).

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