PerspectiveMUSCLE CONTRACTION

Coordinated Feet and the Dance of Ryanodine Receptors

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Science  07 Aug 1998:
Vol. 281, Issue 5378, pp. 790-791
DOI: 10.1126/science.281.5378.790

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Summary

When a muscle contracts, it does so all at once and suddenly. Marx et al. (p. 818) show that one of the coordinated events underlying this simultaneous tensing is the release of calcium into the cytoplasm of the muscle cell. In their Perspective, Bers and Fill describe how ryanodine receptors, which release the calcium, act together to instantly raise the amount of calcium in the cytoplasm to a very high level, triggering a strong contraction of the muscle.