Published 2009

Read in Norwegian

Publication details

Journal : Journal of Muscle Research and Cell Motility , vol. 30 , p. 233–242–10 , 2009

International Standard Numbers :
Printed : 0142-4319
Electronic : 1573-2657

Publication type : Academic article

Contributors : Andersen, Øivind; Torgersen, Jacob Seilø; Pagander, Helene; Magnesen, Thorolf; Johnston, Ian A.

Issue : 05.jun

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Kjetil Aune
Chief Librarian


The scallop adductor muscle consists of striated fibres responsible for the fast closure of the shells, and smooth fibres able to maintain tension in a prolonged state of contraction called catch. Formation of the force-bearing catch linkages has been demonstrated to be initiated by dephosphorylation of the key catch-regulating factor twitchin by a calcineurin-like phosphatase, while the involvement of other thick filament proteins is uncertain. Here we report on the development of catchability of the adductor smooth muscle in the great scallop (Pecten maximus) by analysing the spatio-temporal gene expression patterns of the myosin regulatory light chain (MLCr), twitchin, myorod and calcineurin using whole mount in situ hybridization and real-time quantitative PCR. The MLCr signal was identified in the retractor and adductor muscles of the pediveliger larvae, and the juvenile and adult scallop displayed abundant mRNA levels of MLCr in the smooth and striated adductor muscles. Twitchin was mainly expressed in the smooth adductor muscle during metamorphosis, whereas the adult striated adductor muscle contained seven-folds higher twitchin mRNA levels compared to the smooth portion. Calcineurin expression predominated in the gonads and in the smooth adductor, and five-folds higher mRNA levels were measured in the smooth than in the striated fibres at the adult stage. In contrast to the other genes examined, the expression of myorod was confined to the smooth adductor muscle suggesting that myorod plays a permissive role in the molluscan catch muscles, which are first required at the vulnerable settlement stage as a component of the predator defence system.