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Extraocular muscles have fundamentally distinct properties that make them selectively vulnerable to certain disorders

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Patrick Chinnery, Philip Griffiths


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While skeletal muscles generally perform specific limited roles, extraocular muscles (EOMs) have to be responsive over a wider dynamic range. As a result, EOMs have fundamentally distinct structural, functional, biochemical and immunological properties compared to other skeletal muscles. While these properties enable high fatigue resistance and the rapid and precise control of extraocular motility, they might also explain why EOMs are selectively involved in certain disorders, such as chronic progressive external ophthalmoplegia (CPEO), myasthenia gravis and Graves' ophthalmopathy. This review first gives an overview of the novel myofibre classification in EOMs and then focuses on those properties that might explain why ophthalmoplegia should be so prominent in these disorders. © 2004 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Yu Wai Man CY, Chinnery PF, Griffiths PG

Publication type: Review

Publication status: Published

Journal: Neuromuscular Disorders

Year: 2005

Volume: 15

Issue: 1

Pages: 17-23

Print publication date: 01/01/2005

ISSN (print): 0960-8966

ISSN (electronic): 1873-2364


DOI: 10.1016/j.nmd.2004.10.002

PubMed id: 15639116