The Biochemical journal

Establishment of a human skeletal muscle-derived cell line: biochemical, cellular and electrophysiological characterization.

PMID 23905709


Excitation-contraction coupling is the physiological mechanism occurring in muscle cells whereby an electrical signal sensed by the dihydropyridine receptor located on the transverse tubules is transformed into a chemical gradient (Ca2+ increase) by activation of the ryanodine receptor located on the sarcoplasmic reticulum membrane. In the present study, we characterized for the first time the excitation-contraction coupling machinery of an immortalized human skeletal muscle cell line. Intracellular Ca2+ measurements showed a normal response to pharmacological activation of the ryanodine receptor, whereas 3D-SIM (super-resolution structured illumination microscopy) revealed a low level of structural organization of ryanodine receptors and dihydropyridine receptors. Interestingly, the expression levels of several transcripts of proteins involved in Ca2+ homoeostasis and differentiation indicate that the cell line has a phenotype closer to that of slow-twitch than fast-twitch muscles. These results point to the potential application of such human muscle-derived cell lines to the study of neuromuscular disorders; in addition, they may serve as a platform for the development of therapeutic strategies aimed at correcting defects in Ca2+ homoeostasis due to mutations in genes involved in Ca2+ regulation.

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