Mechanical programming of arterial smooth muscle cells in health and ageing

Johnson, Robert T. ORCID:, Solanki, Reesha and Warren, Derek T. (2021) Mechanical programming of arterial smooth muscle cells in health and ageing. Biophysical Reviews, 13 (5). 757–768. ISSN 1867-2450

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Arterial smooth muscle cells (ASMCs), the predominant cell type within the arterial wall, detect and respond to external mechanical forces. These forces can be derived from blood flow (i.e. pressure and stretch) or from the supporting extracellular matrix (i.e. stiffness and topography). The healthy arterial wall is elastic, allowing the artery to change shape in response to changes in blood pressure, a property known as arterial compliance. As we age, the mechanical forces applied to ASMCs change; blood pressure and arterial wall rigidity increase and result in a reduction in arterial compliance. These changes in mechanical environment enhance ASMC contractility and promote disease-associated changes in ASMC phenotype. For mechanical stimuli to programme ASMCs, forces must influence the cell’s load-bearing apparatus, the cytoskeleton. Comprised of an interconnected network of actin filaments, microtubules and intermediate filaments, each cytoskeletal component has distinct mechanical properties that enable ASMCs to respond to changes within the mechanical environment whilst maintaining cell integrity. In this review, we discuss how mechanically driven cytoskeletal reorganisation programmes ASMC function and phenotypic switching.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: arterial compliance,arterial smooth muscle cell,cytoskeleton,mechanotransduction,biophysics,structural biology,molecular biology ,/dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/1300/1304
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Science > School of Pharmacy
UEA Research Groups: Faculty of Science > Research Groups > Molecular and Tissue Pharmacology
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Depositing User: LivePure Connector
Date Deposited: 08 Sep 2021 02:00
Last Modified: 07 Jul 2023 00:20
DOI: 10.1007/s12551-021-00833-6

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