In order to study cardiac myocyte development different approaches were established during the last decades. The main purpose of these studies was the differentiation of cardiac precursor cells into specialized, differentiated cell types, as well as the development of functional properties such as Ca2+ handling, rhythm generation and excitation-contraction coupling of cardiomyocytes during development. Although considerable data exist about skeletal myogenesis [1–3], limited knowledge is available with regard to the origin of the commitment and differentiation of cardiac cells. A comprehensive, morphological study on the cytodifferentiation from mesenchymal cells into cardiac myocytes is described in the embryonic murine heart : According to the authors, different stages of myofibrillogenesis are present during embryological myocardial development. Cells with no or only little myofibrillar arrangement develop to myocardial cells with orientated myofibrils [5, 6]. A number of morphological studies have investigated heart development on embryonic, neonatal and adult isolated cardiomyocytes also from different species [7–16].
Research Areas and Centers
- Academic Focus: Center for Infection and Inflammation Research (ZIEL)