Skeletal muscle extracellular matrix (ECM), surrender of muscle fibers, the amount of which is just <5%, appeals less attention in the field of skeletal muscle physiology. Thus, at one time, the function of skeletal muscle ECM was arbitrarily considered as general structural support that is typical in other tissues. However, an increasing number of recent evidences have indicated that the ECM plays a critical role in muscle fiber force transmission, proliferation, differentiation, migration, and polarization of cells. Alterations of molecules within the ECM are involved in fibrosis, muscle aging, regeneration, and myopathies. In this chapter, we review the composition and functions of ECM in skeletal muscle development.
Part of the book: Composition and Function of the Extracellular Matrix in the Human Body