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J Musculoskelet Neuronal Interact. 2011 Dec;11(4):286-97.

Is the myonuclear domain size fixed?

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Institute for Biomedical Research into Human Movement and Health, Manchester Metropolitan University, John Dalton Building, Chester Street, Manchester M1 5GD, United Kingdom.


It has been suggested that the number of myonuclei in a muscle fibre changes in proportion to the change in fibre size, resulting in a constant myonuclear domain size, defined as the cytoplasmic volume per myonucleus. The myonuclear domain size varies, however, between fibre types and is inversely related with the oxidative capacity of a fibre. Overall, the observations of an increase in myonuclear domain size during both maturational growth and overload-induced hypertrophy, and the decrease in myonuclear domain size during disuse- and ageing-associated muscle atrophy suggest that the concept of a constant myonuclear domain size needs to be treated cautiously. It also suggests that only when the myonuclear domain size exceeds a certain threshold during growth or overload-induced hypertrophy acquisition of new myonuclei is required for further fibre hypertrophy.

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