Myostatin (also known as growth/differentiation factor-8) is a recently identified member of the transforming growth factor-beta family of secreted regulatory factors. Mice having targeted disruption of the myostatin gene displayed a marked increase in muscle mass, up to three times normal size. Additionally, a myostatin mutation has been linked to double muscled cattle breeds characterized by a visible, generalized increase in muscle mass. Therefore, it is suggested that myostatin in muscle may be one of the long sought inhibitors that specifically control the growth of individual tissues or organs. In the present paper, we review involvement of myostatin in muscle growth of different species.
Copyright 2002 Elsevier Science Inc.