Scientists discover molecule that helps skeletal muscle development
Washington, July 5 (ANI): A new study has found a particular molecule that plays a key role in skeletal muscle development in the embryo.
Researchers from the University of East Anglia studied the complexity and significance of microRNA molecules, which could be vital in the maintenance of healthy muscle or muscle regeneration.
According to them, a particular microRNA, called miR-206 is crucial for normal muscle development in the embryo.
MiR-206 switches off a gene called Pax3, allowing early stage muscle cells to become more specialised contractile cells needed for muscle to function, the researchers explained.
They added that this regulation is also important in adult muscle stem cells, which differentiate in response to muscle injury or exercise.
"Muscle is vital to our well being, but it can become fragile, for example as we age or through muscle-wasting diseases. Therefore understanding how muscle tissue develops and is maintained is important," Andrea Munsterberg, professor in developmental biology at UEA, said.
"Discovering how the Pax3 gene is regulated by miR-206 and controls other genes that lead to muscle differentiation is significant.
"If you control Pax3 you could control when cells become more specialised and take on their unique function. We suggest that what we have learnt about embryo development also applies to adult muscle," she added.
The study has been published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. (ANI)
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