Primary Faculty

Melissa L. Knothe Tate, Ph.D.


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Selected links:

• Experimental and Computational Mechanobiology Laboratories
  Explore the Mechanobiology Team, Research Highlights, and Resources.
• Department of Mechanical & Aerospace Engineering >>
  The MAE dept. is active in many cutting edge fields, from biomechanics to nanotechnology.
• Orthopedic Research Center >>
  The ORC joins basic and clinical researchers to enhance medical care and technology.
• Curriculum vitae
• PubMed Citations >>

Research Summary

Osteocytes, osteoclasts, osteoblasts and pluripotent cells within bone marrow form a functional syncytium linking cells deep within bone tissue to cells on bone surfaces and/or within close proximity to the vascular system. This cellular network permits transmission of chemical, electrical and mechanical signals between cells that have the machinery to remodel bone tissue (osteocytes, osteoclasts, osteoblasts) and those with the capacity to affect the population of bone remodeling cells (pluripotent cells and monocytes in the marrow, circulating blood) as well as to invoke a systemic response. Remodeling events appear highly "choreographed," but the signaling and timing of interactions between osteocytes, osteoclasts and osteoblasts are not clear. A primary focus of the Computational and Experimental Mechanobiology Laboratories is to understand these interactions. Specifically, we aim to uncover mechanisms underlying processes of growth, adaptation, and repair of musculoskeletal tissues, in particular, bone. Furthermore, we are exploiting insights gained from these studies to develop drug delivery systems for skeletal tissues and new bioactive endoprostheses designed to optimize osseointegration. In addition, we are applying this knowledge to optimize function of tissue-engineered bone. Finally, new prophylactic treatment modalities to prevent osteopenia due to osteoporosis and disuse are under study. [MechBio Home]

Recent Publications

Knothe Tate ML, Ritzman TR, Schneider E, Knothe U, Testing of a New One Stage Surgical Procedure Exploiting the Periosteum and Bone Transport for Repair of Long Bone Defects, Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, in press.
Anderson EJ, Falls TD, Sorkin A, Knothe Tate ML, The imperative for controlled mechanical stresses in unraveling cellular mechanisms of mechanotransduction. Biomedical Engineering Online, 5/1/27: 1-14, 2006.
Anderson EJ, Kaliyamoorthy S, Alexander JID, Knothe Tate ML, Nano-Microscale Models of Periosteocytic Flow Show Differences in Stresses Imparted to Cell Body and Processes, Annals of Biomedical Engineering, 33(1):52-62, 2005.
Steck R, Knothe Tate ML, In Silico Stochastic Network Models that Emulate the Molecular Sieving Characteristics of Bone, Annals of Biomedical Engineering, 33(1):87-94, 2005.
Sorkin A, Dee KC, Knothe Tate ML, Invited Review Article: "Culture Shock" from the Bone Cell’s Perspective: Emulating Physiologic Conditions for Mechanobiological Investigation, Am J Physiol Cell Physiol, 287(6):C1527-36, 2004.
Knothe Tate ML, Adamson JR, Tami AE, Bauer TW, Invited Review Article: Cells in Focus - The Osteocyte, The International Journal of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, 36(1): 1-8, 2004.


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