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Titin Gene (TTN)

  1. Siegfried Labeit1,
  2. Julius Bogomolovas1,
  3. Dietmar Labeit1,
  4. Henk Granzier2

Published Online: 15 NOV 2011

DOI: 10.1002/9780470015902.a0005021.pub2



How to Cite

Labeit, S., Bogomolovas, J., Labeit, D. and Granzier, H. 2011. Titin Gene (TTN). eLS. .

Author Information

  1. 1

    University of Heidelberg, Department for Integrative Pathophysiology, Germany

  2. 2

    University of Arizona, Tucson Arizona, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 NOV 2011


The titin locus located on chromosome 2q24 in the human genome expresses about 100 kb full-length mRNAs, that are translated into giant up to 34.350-residue large polypeptides. Therefore, titin is by far the largest known protein. The titin protein is abundant in vertebrate muscles, where it spans half of the sarcomere. In situ, 1–2 μm long titin polypeptides establish a sarcomeric filament system that is critical for myofibrillar integrity and elasticity. Biomechanically, titin's intrinsic elasticity is fine-tuned in the different muscle tissues through alternative splicing, post-translational modifications and protein–protein interactions. Moreover, a plethora of molecular interactions with stress-regulated ligands positions titin centrally in stretch-dependent signalling in muscle. Therefore, mutations in this filament system are important causes of hereditary cardiomyopathies and muscular dystrophies.

Key Concepts:

  • Sarcomeres consist of precisely assembled proteins that together form the basic functional units of striated muscle and give rise to efficient and finely tuned contraction.

  • In muscle tissues, 1–2 μm single titin polypeptide chains span half of the sarcomere.

  • The intrasarcomeric filamentous titin protein provides sarcomeres with intrinsic elasticity and couples stretch-dependent signalling together with muscle remodelling.

  • Titin molecule is tailored to physiological requirements of different muscles through alternative splicing, post-translational modifications and protein–protein interactions.

  • Mutations in the titin gene are associated with different heart and skeletal muscle diseases.


  • muscle contraction;
  • myofibrillar elasticity and signalling;
  • sarcomere assembly