Smooth muscle cell (SMC) critically regulates tissue contractility and phenotypic switching leads to a range of serious diseases. SMC phenotypic switching can be triggered through pathological mechanical stimuli (stiffness and pressure), in a pathway that involves opening of mechanical gated ion channels. In addition to changes to stiffness there is also a change in extracellular matrix (ECM) composition and nanotopography (through different ECM fibre architecture). Stretch activated ion channels (SACs) have been suggested to respond different nanotopographies in neuronal cells, but details remain elusive. Moreover, it is unclear how this contributes to the regulation of pulmonary disease is unclear.
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