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Cell Adh Migr. 2009 Oct-Dec;3(4):337-41. Epub 2009 Oct 24.

Role of matrix metalloproteinases in skeletal muscle: migration, differentiation, regeneration and fibrosis.

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  • 1The Laboratory of Molecular Pathology, Stem Cell Research Center, Children's Hospital of UPMC, University of Pittsburgh, School of Medicine, Pittsburgh, PA, USA.


Matrix metalloproteases (MMPs) are key regulatory molecules in the formation, remodeling and degradation of extracellular matrix (ECM) components in both physiological and pathological processes in many tissues. In skeletal muscle, MMPs play an important role in the homeostasis and maintenance of myofiber functional integrity by breaking down ECM and regulating skeletal muscle cell migration, differentiation and regeneration. Skeletal muscle satellite cells, a group of quiescent stem cells located between the basement membrane and the plasmalemma of myofibers, are responsible for lifelong maintenance and repairing, which can be activated and as a result migrate underneath the basement membrane to promote regeneration at the injured site. MMPs are able to degrade ECM components, thereby facilitating satellite cell migration and differentiation. This current review will focus on the critical roles of MMPs in skeletal muscle injury and repair, which include satellite cell activation with migration and differentiation. The effect of MMPs on muscle regeneration and fibrous scar tissue formation, as well as therapeutic insights for the future will be explored.

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