Accumulating evidence indicates that the circadian clock, a transcriptional/translational feedback circuit that generates ~24-hour oscillations in behavior and physiology, is a key temporal regulatory mechanism involved in many important aspects of muscle physiology. Given the clock as an evolutionarily-conserved time-keeping mechanism that synchronizes internal physiology to environmental cues, locomotor activities initiated by skeletal muscle enable entrainment to the light-dark cycles on earth, thus ensuring organismal survival and fitness. Despite the current understanding of the role of molecular clock in preventing age-related sarcopenia, investigations into the underlying molecular pathways that transmit clock signals to the maintenance of skeletal muscle growth and function are only emerging. In the current review, the importance of the muscle clock in maintaining muscle mass during development, repair and aging, together with its contribution to muscle metabolism, will be discussed. Based on our current understandings of how tissue-intrinsic muscle clock functions in the key aspects muscle physiology, interventions targeting the myogenic-modulatory activities of the clock circuit may offer new avenues for prevention and treatment of muscular diseases. Studies of mechanisms underlying circadian clock function and regulation in skeletal muscle warrant continued efforts.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)
- Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)