Skeletal bone is one of the cell-matrix structures studied in this class. (Figure by MIT OCW.)
Mechanical forces play a decisive role during development of tissues and organs, during remodeling following injury as well as in normal function. A stress field influences cell function primarily through deformation of the extracellular matrix to which cells are attached. Deformed cells express different biosynthetic activity relative to undeformed cells. The unit cell process paradigm combined with topics in connective tissue mechanics form the basis for discussions of several topics from cell biology, physiology, and medicine.