Author(s): Gommans IM, Vlak MH, de Haan A, van Engelen BG
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Abstract Changes in intracellular Ca2+-concentration play an important role in the excitation-contraction-relaxation cycle of skeletal muscle. In this review we describe various inheritable muscle diseases to highlight the role of Ca2+-regulatory mechanisms. Upon excitation the ryanodine receptor releases Ca2+ in the cytosol. During and after contraction the sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) Ca2+ATPase (SERCA) pumps Ca2+ back in the SR resulting in relaxation. An abnormal change in the intracellular Ca2+-concentration results in defective muscle contraction and/or relaxation, which is the cause of various muscle diseases. Malignant hyperthermia (MH) and central core disease (CCD) are both caused by mutations in the ryanodine receptor but show different clinical phenotypes. In MH an acute increase of Ca2+ results in excessive muscle contraction causing rigidity, while in CCD a chronic rise of cytosolic Ca2+ is seen, leading to mitochondrial damage, disorganization of myofibrils and muscle weakness. In Brody disease and also in mitochondrial myopathies, SERCA functions sub optimal causing a prolonged physiological Ca2+-elevation leading to slowing of relaxation. Defective actin-myosin interactions, as in nemaline myopathy and also in mitochondrial myopathies due to ATP-shortage, cause Ca2+-hyposensitivity and slowness of contraction. Information of Ca2+-kinetics in these inherited muscular diseases improves our understanding of the role of calcium in the physiology and pathophysiology of the skeletal muscle cell.
This article was published in J Muscle Res Cell Motil
and referenced in Journal of Genetic Syndromes & Gene Therapy