During aging, we naturally lose muscle mass. Researchers from the National University of Singapore have discovered a protein that mimics the effect of exercise under the influence of a magnetic field. This could improve the life quality of patients with reduced mobility.
The Magnetic Field Awakens the Protein
Exercise is a great way to maintain good physical condition. However, some do not have the opportunity to develop sufficient physical activity – due to aging, when the muscles naturally weaken, or certain diseases that can prevent movement.
Researchers at the National University of Singapore (NUS) have recently found that a protein called TRPC1 promotes muscle growth when a cell with this protein is exposed to a weak magnetic field.
“The use of pulsed magnetic fields to simulate some of the effects of exercise will be greatly benefit patients with a muscle injury, stroke, and frailty as a result of advanced age,” said lead researcher Assoc Prof Franco-Obregón from the NUS Department of Surgery.
Protein Key Role
Researchers stopped the production of TRPC1 protein during testing on genetically modified muscle cells. The muscle cells then stopped responding to the magnetic field. Then, when the protein was re-introduced into the muscle cells, they came under the influence of magnetism again.
Scientists used a magnetic field that was 10 to 15 times stronger than the Earth’s magnetic field, which is weaker than a conventional bar magnet. The discovered process mimics the effect that exercise has on muscles. The TRPC1 protein appears to function as an “antenna” that detects a weak magnetic field.
These observations supported the idea that the Earth’s magnetic field naturally interacts with muscles and elicits biological responses. Muscle health is strongly affected by metabolic health such as weight, blood sugar, insulin, and cholesterol. The newly discovered ability of the TRPC1 protein can be helpful in medicine and everyday life.
Source & credit: https://news.nus.edu.sg/molecule-that-promotes-muscle-health-when-magnetised/