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Old 01-03-2009, 03:06 PM   #18
C. David Henderson
Location: Santa Fe New Mexico
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 606
Re: Physical Theory of Aiki?

On the issue of signals, the body, and the nervous system, this article, from the AT site, seems on-topic.

Connective tissue: A body-wide signaling
Helene M. Langevin

Summary Unspecialized ‘‘loose'' connective tissue forms an anatomical network throughout the body. This paper
presents the hypothesis that, in addition, connective tissue functions as a body-wide mechanosensitive signaling
network. Three categories of signals are discussed: electrical, cellular and tissue remodeling, each potentially
responsive to mechanical forces over different time scales. It is proposed that these types of signals generate dynamic,
evolving patterns that interact with one another. Such connective tissue signaling would be affected by changes in
movement and posture, and may be altered in pathological conditions (e.g. local decreased mobility due to injury or
pain). Connective tissue thus may function as a previously unrecognized whole body communication system. Since
connective tissue is intimately associated with all other tissues (e.g. lung, intestine), connective tissue signaling may
coherently influence (and be influenced by) the normal or pathological function of a wide variety of organ systems.
Demonstrating the existence of a connective signaling network therefore may profoundly influence our understanding
of health and disease.
c 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Dr. Langevin eleborates:

unspecialized connective tissue not only forms a
continuous network surrounding and infiltrating
all muscles, but also permeates all other tissues
and organs. Within individual organs, the extracellular
interstitium and connective tissue matrix play
a well-recognized role in integrating the function
of diverse cell types existing within each tissue
(e.g. lung, intestine) [3]. Moreover, the connective
tissue matrix is a key participant in mechanotransduction,
or mechanisms allowing cells to perceive
and interpret mechanical forces [4]. Rapid progress
has been made in the past twenty years in the
understanding of mechanotransduction at the
molecular, cellular and individual tissue level
[5,6]. The continuous interplay between cells, matrix
and mechanical forces is also known to control
long term sculpting of the connective tissue matrix.
Indeed connective tissue proteins have been
hypothesized to convey information stability and
tissue ‘‘memory'' [7]. No known mechanism, however,
explains how mechanical forces might be
interpreted and integrated at the level of the
whole body. Since connective tissue plays an intimate
role in the function of all other tissues, a
complex connective tissue network system integrating
whole body mechanical forces may coherently
influence the function of all other
physiological systems. Demonstrating the existence
of such a ‘‘metasystem'' would therefore change
our core understanding of physiology.

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