Feeling the Pressure: Hypertension in Action

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João Ribas and Ali Khademhosseini

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Hypertension makes the muscle cells in your blood vessels stretch more. Here, aortic muscle cells are stretched and align perpendicular to the direction you are stretching them!

These observations go against the alignment of cells in blood vessels, which align parallel to stretch and can therefore sense and react to changes in blood pressure. I want to understand the mechanisms behind hypertension and build an in vitro model allowing us to study the precise mechanism and cellular forces involved in the disease state.