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Muscle, Smooth: Unstriated and unstriped muscle, one of the muscles of the internal organs, blood vessels, hair follicles, etc. Contractile elements are elongated, usually spindle-shaped cells with centrally located nuclei. Smooth muscle fibers are bound together into sheets or bundles by reticular fibers and frequently elastic nets are also abundant. (From Stedman, 25th ed)

Preparation and Utilization of Freshly Isolated Human Detrusor Smooth Muscle Cells for Characterization of 9-Phenanthrol-Sensitive Cation Currents

1Department of Pharmaceutical Sciences, College of Pharmacy, University of Tennessee Health Science Center, 2Department of Urology, Medical University of South Carolina, 3Department of Urology, College of Medicine, University of Tennessee Health Science Center, 4Department of Pharmacology, College of Medicine, University of Tennessee Health Science Center

JoVE 59884

 Immunology and Infection

Muscle Contraction

JoVE 10869


In skeletal muscles, acetylcholine is released by nerve terminals at the motor end plate—the point of synaptic communication between motor neurons and muscle fibers. Binding of acetylcholine to its receptors on the sarcolemma allows entry of sodium ions into the cell and triggers an action potential in the muscle cell. Thus, electrical signals from the brain are transmitted to the muscle. Subsequently, the enzyme acetylcholinesterase breaks down acetylcholine to prevent excessive muscle stimulation.   Individuals with the disorder myasthenia gravis, develop antibodies against the acetylcholine receptor. This prevents transmission of electrical signals between the motor neuron and muscle fiber and impairs skeletal muscle contraction. Myasthenia gravis is treated using drugs that inhibit acetylcholinesterase (allowing more opportunities for the neurotransmitter to stimulate the remaining receptors) or suppress the immune system (preventing the formation of antibodies). Unlike skeletal muscles, smooth muscles present in the walls of internal organs are innervated by the autonomic nervous system and undergo involuntary contractions. Contraction is mediated by the interaction between two filament proteins—actin and myosin. The interaction of actin and myosin is closely linked to intracellular calcium concentrat

 Core: Biology

Quantitative Analysis of Cellular Composition in Advanced Atherosclerotic Lesions of Smooth Muscle Cell Lineage-Tracing Mice

1Heart, Lung, Blood and Vascular Medicine Institute, University of Pittsburgh, 2Robert M. Berne Cardiovascular Research Center, University of Virginia, 3Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Genetics, University of Virginia, 4Division of Cardiology, University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine

JoVE 59139


Contractility Measurements of Human Uterine Smooth Muscle to Aid Drug Development

1Harris-Wellbeing Preterm Birth Research Centre, Department of Cellular and Molecular Physiology, Institute of Translational Medicine, University of Liverpool, 2School of Biomedical Sciences, The University of Queensland, 3Faculty of Chemistry, Institute of Biological Chemistry, University of Vienna, 4Institute for Molecular Bioscience, University of Queensland, 5Center for Physiology and Pharmacology, Medical University of Vienna

JoVE 56639


Paracrine Signaling

JoVE 10716

Paracrine signaling allows cells to communicate with their immediate neighbors via secretion of signaling molecules. The signal only triggers a response in nearby target cells as the signal molecules degrade quickly or are inactivated by nearby cells if not taken up. Prominent examples of paracrine signaling include nitric oxide signaling in blood vessels, synaptic signaling of neurons, the blood clotting system, tissue repair/wound healing, and local allergic skin reactions. One of the essential paracrine signaling molecules is the gas nitric oxide (NO). Nitric oxide is produced by a family of enzymes known as nitric oxide synthases. Blood vessels contain several layers of cells. The innermost layer of cells is the endothelium. Endothelial cells have nitric oxide synthase, which produces nitric oxide that diffuses in all directions. The nitric oxide that reaches the blood does not contribute to signaling but immediately reacts with biochemicals, such as hemoglobin. Nitric oxide molecules that diffuse in the opposite direction, towards the next layer of the blood vessel, participate in some important signaling. The layer just exterior to the endothelium is made up of smooth muscle cells. The function of smooth muscle cells is to contract. When these cells contract, they clamp down on the blood vessel, narrowing its diameter and consequently rais

 Core: Biology

Cell Structure- Concept

JoVE 10587


Cells represent the most basic biological units of all organisms, whether it be simple, single-celled organisms like bacteria, or large, multicellular organisms like elephants and giant redwood trees. In the mid 19th century, the Cell Theory was proposed to define a cell, which states:

Every living organism is made up of one or more cells.
The cells…

 Lab Bio

Endoplasmic Reticulum

JoVE 10969

The Endoplasmic Reticulum (ER) in eukaryotic cells is a substantial network of interconnected membranes with diverse functions, from calcium storage to biomolecule synthesis. A primary component of the endomembrane system, the ER manufactures phospholipids critical for membrane function throughout the cell. Additionally, the two distinct regions of the ER specialize in the manufacture of specific lipids and proteins. The rough ER is characterized by the presence of microscopically-visible ribosomes on its surface. As a ribosome begins translation of an mRNA in the cytosol, the presence of a signal sequence directs the ribosome to the surface of the rough ER. A receptor in the membrane of the ER recognizes this sequence and facilitates the entry of the growing polypeptide into the ER lumen through a transmembrane protein complex. With the assistance of chaperones, nascent proteins fold and undergo other functional modifications, including glycosylation, disulfide bond formation, and oligomerization. Properly folded and modified proteins are then packaged into vesicles to be shipped to the Golgi apparatus and other locations in the cell. Chaperones identify improperly folded proteins and facilitate degradation in the cytosol by proteasomes. Lacking ribosomes, the smooth ER is the cellular location of lipid and steroid synthesis, cellular detoxification,

 Core: Biology
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