The heart is a dynamic muscle that grows and shrinks in response to stressors such as exercise and disease. The secret to its malleability lies in individual cells, which get bigger or smaller depending on the heart’s needs. A new study of mouse hearts reveals a previously unknown mechanism by which heart cells control their size by ramping up or stopping the production of a key factor called PABPC1.
Any expectant mother will tell you that she wants her baby's organs to develop properly in the womb.
What she may not realize, however, is that a child's internal organs continue to develop for months and years after birth. This critical period is full of cellular changes that transform the organization and function of most tissues. But the exact mechanisms underlying postnatal organ maturation are still a mystery.