The Buckley lab is currently accepting applications for graduate students interested in viscoelasticity in connective tissues. For more information, please contact Professor Buckley.
Viscoelasticity in Connective Tissues
Confocal micrograph of articular cartilage under dynamic shear loading. The black stripes are photobleached lines used as markers to track time-dependent tissue deformation.
Tendon, ligament, cartilage and many other soft biological tissues serve predominantly mechanical functions. However, unlike steel, concrete and other elastic solids, these structurally complex materials exhibit a history- and time-dependent response to loading (i.e., viscoelasticity) that must be characterized in order to predict in vivo deformations and understand loss of mechanical function in the pathological state. Our lab is interested in evaluating changes in soft tissue viscoelastic properties across multiple length scales during processes including exercise, aging, injury and disease and identifying the specific biological and structural factors responsible for these alterations. To characterize viscoelasticity at the tissue, matrix and cellular levels, we combine simultaneous high-speed microscopy, force measurement and control of deformation on live tissue explants. Using our findings, we seek to devise strategies for assessing the efficacy of treatments or diagnosing damage based on viscoelastic measurements.
- Decorin expression is important for age-related changes in tendon structure and mechanical properties. Matrix Biol. 32, 3-13. (2013 Jan 01).
- Implanted adipose progenitor cells as physicochemical regulators of breast cancer. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 109, 9786-91. (2012 Jun 19).
- Insights into interstitial flow, shear stress, and mass transport effects on ECM heterogeneity in bioreactor-cultivated engineered cartilage hydrogels. Biomech Model Mechanobiol. 11, 689-702. (2012 May 01).