- Journal Article
Rights / licenseCreative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 3.0 Unported
Mechanotransduction is a process where cells sense their surroundings and convert the physical forces in their environment into an appropriate response. Calcium plays a crucial role in the translation of such forces to biochemical signals that control various biological processes fundamental in muscle development. The mechanical stimulation of muscle cells may for example result from stretch, electric and magnetic stimulation, shear stress, and altered gravity exposure. The response, mainly involving changes in intracellular calcium concentration then leads to a cascade of events by the activation of downstream signaling pathways. The key calcium-dependent pathways described here include the nuclear factor of activated T cells (NFAT) and mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) activation. The subsequent effects in cellular homeostasis consist of cytoskeletal remodeling, cell cycle progression, growth, differentiation, and apoptosis, all necessary for healthy muscle development, repair, and regeneration. A deregulation from the normal process due to disuse, trauma, or disease can result in a clinical condition such as muscle atrophy, which entails a significant loss of muscle mass. In order to develop therapies against such diseased states, we need to better understand the relevance of calcium signaling and the downstream responses to mechanical forces in skeletal muscle. The purpose of this review is to discuss in detail how diverse mechanical stimuli cause changes in calcium homeostasis by affecting membrane channels and the intracellular stores, which in turn regulate multiple pathways that impart these effects and control the fate of muscle tissue. Show more
Journal / seriesCellular Physiology and Biochemistry
Pages / Article No.
SubjectMechano-gated calcium channels; Calcium signaling; Mechanical forces; Mechanosensation; Mechanoresponses; Muscle atrophy; Muscle dystrophy
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