The LINC complex, mechanotransduction, and mesenchymal stem cell function and fate

Tasneem Bouzid, Eunju Kim, Brandon D. Riehl, Amir Monemian Esfahani, Jordan Rosenbohm, Ruiguo Yang, Bin Duan, Jung Yul Lim

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

80 Scopus citations


Mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) show tremendous promise as a cell source for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine, and are understood to be mechanosensitive to external mechanical environments. In recent years, increasing evidence points to nuclear envelope proteins as a key player in sensing and relaying mechanical signals in MSCs to modulate cellular form, function, and differentiation. Of particular interest is the Linker of Nucleoskeleton and Cytoskeleton (LINC) complex that includes nesprin and SUN. In this review, the way in which cells can sense external mechanical environments through an intact nuclear envelope and LINC complex proteins will be briefly described. Then, we will highlight the current body of literature on the role of the LINC complex in regulating MSC function and fate decision, without and with external mechanical loading conditions. Our review and suggested future perspective may provide a new insight into the understanding of MSC mechanobiology and related functional tissue engineering applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number68
JournalJournal of Biological Engineering
Issue number1
StatePublished - Aug 7 2019


  • Functional tissue engineering
  • Linker of Nucleoskeleton and cytoskeleton (LINC)
  • Mechanotransduction
  • Mesenchymal stem cells
  • Nesprin
  • SUN

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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