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Yelena Chernyavskaya, Alicia M. Ebert, Emily Milligan and Deborah M. Garrity Voltage-gated calcium channel CACNB2 (β2.1) protein is required in the heart for control of cell proliferation and heart tube integrity Developmental Dynamics 241

Version of Record online: 8 FEB 2012 | DOI: 10.1002/dvdy.23746

Key findings:

  • The CACNB2 gene is required during embryogenesis for normal ventricular cardiomyocyte proliferation, cardiac looping, chamber morphogenesis and cardiac contractility.

  • Reduction of CACNB2 reduced the integrity of embryonic heart tubes, rendering them vulnerable to rupture upon stress, and depleting the accumulation of N-cadherin at cardiomyocyte membranes.

  • Pharmacological data support the hypothesis that CACNB2 functions in a calcium-channel dependent fashion to mediate cardiac contractility. However, CACNB2 might alternatively function as a MAGUK scaffolding unit to facilitate N-cadherin based cell attachments important for cardiac integrity.

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