Bone marrow mesenchymal stem cells (BMSC) have the potential to differentiate into a variety of cell types like osteoblasts, chondroblasts, adipocytes, etc. It is well known that mechanical forces regulate the biological function of cells. The aim of this study was to investigate the effect of uniaxial stretching on the orientation and biological functions of BMSC. Rat BMSCs were harvested from femoral and tibial bone marrow by density gradient centrifugation. Cells from passages 1–6 were characterized by flow cytometry using monoclonal antibodies. The recovered cells were stably positive for the markers CD90 and CD44 and negative for CD34 and CD45. A cyclic 10% uniaxial stretching at 1 Hz was applied on rat BMSC for different time-courses. The length, width, and orientation of the cells were subsequently determined. Expression of collagen types I and III and tenascin-C mRNAs was measured by real-time RT-PCR, and the synthesis of these receptors was determined by radioimmunoassay. Results showed that uniaxial stretching lengthened and rearranged the cells. Compared with control groups, expression of collagen types I and III mRNAs was up-regulated after 12-h of stretching, while significant increase in synthesis of the two collagen protein types was not observed until after 24-h stretching. The expression of tenascin-C mRNA was significantly increased after a 24-h stretching. These data suggest that cyclic stretching promotes the synthesis of collagen types I and III and tenascin-C by the rat BMSC.