Gene Expression in Response to Mechanical Stress

Document Type

Student Presentation

Presentation Date



College of Arts and Sciences


Biological Sciences

Faculty Sponsor

Juila Oxford


Heart attacks are a prevalent ailment in western culture. When blood flow is restricted within the heart, due to blood clots or build-up in the coronary arteries, a heart attack is likely to occur. When this happens, stress develops in the cardiac fibroblasts within the myocardium. The aim of our study is to investigate gene expression in fibroblasts. This study will generate new knowledge about the way cells respond to mechanical forces and how gene expression levels compare to standard housekeeping genes. Additionally, new treatments and therapeutic targets may be discovered. Our research will assess gene expression and matrix protein accumulation in fibroblasts. Previous work in this field has relied on conventional 2D cultures. Our study will compare our 3D results to previous findings. This research highlights the importance of more realistic modeling of cultural cells which can then be easily applied to live subjects when research is furthered.

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