The effects of vibration loading on adipose stem cell number, viability and differentiation towards bone-forming cells

Laura Tirkkonen, Heidi Halonen, Jari Hyttinen, Hannu Kuokkanen, Harri Sievänen, Anna-Maija Koivisto, Bettina Mannerström, George K. B. Sándor, Riitta Suuronen, Susanna Miettinen, Suvi Haimi


Mechanical stimulation is an essential factor affecting the metabolism of bone cells and their precursors. We hypothesized that vibration loading would stimulate differentiation of human adipose stem cells (hASCs) towards bone-forming cells and simultaneously inhibit differentiation towards fat tissue. We developed a vibration-loading device that produces 3g peak acceleration at frequencies of 50 and 100 Hz to cells cultured on well plates. hASCs were cultured using either basal medium (BM), osteogenic medium (OM) or adipogenic medium (AM), and subjected to vibration loading for 3 h d–1 for 1, 7 and 14 day. Osteogenesis, i.e. differentiation of hASCs towards bone-forming cells, was analysed using markers such as alkaline phosphatase (ALP) activity, collagen production and mineralization. Both 50 and 100 Hz vibration frequencies induced significantly increased ALP activity and collagen production of hASCs compared with the static control at 14 day in OM. A similar trend was detected for mineralization, but the increase was not statistically significant. Furthermore, vibration loading inhibited adipocyte differentiation of hASCs. Vibration did not affect cell number or viability. These findings suggest that osteogenic culture conditions amplify the stimulatory effect of vibration loading on differentiation of hASCs towards bone-forming cells.

  • Received April 7, 2011.
  • Accepted May 4, 2011.
View Full Text