Nuclear decoupling is part of a rapid protein-level cellular response to high-intensity mechanical loading

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

  • External authors:
  • Venkatesh Mallikarjun
  • Oana Dobre
  • Mark Jackson
  • Robert Pedley


Studies of cellular mechano-signaling have often utilised static models that do not fully replicate the dynamics of living tissues. Here, we examine the time-dependent response of primary human mesenchymal stem cells (hMSCs) to cyclic tensile strain (CTS). At low-intensity strain (1 hour, 4% CTS at 1 Hz) cell characteristics mimic responses to increased substrate stiffness. As the strain regime is intensified (frequency increased to 5 Hz), we characterise rapid establishment of a broad, structured and reversible protein-level response, even as transcription is apparently downregulated. Protein abundance is quantified coincident with changes to protein conformation and post translational modification (PTM). Furthermore, we characterise changes to the linker of nucleoskeleton and cytoskeleton (LINC) complex that bridges the nuclear envelope, and specifically to levels and PTMs of Sad1/UNC-84 (SUN) domain-containing protein 2 (SUN2). The result of this regulation is to decouple mechano-transmission between the cytoskeleton and the nucleus, thus conferring protection to chromatin.

Bibliographical metadata

Original languageEnglish
JournalNature Communications
Publication statusPublished - 12 Sep 2019

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