Affiliation: College of Bioengineering, Chongqing University, Chongqing 400044, China.
Cytoskeleton is a major component of living cells consisting of microfilaments, microtubules and intermediate filaments. It plays a key role in many cell functions such as cell migration, cell division, signal transduction and cell apoptosis. Researchers have investigated the cytoskeleton by analyzing its molecular components in isolation and studying its ‘gel’ properties. The proposal of tensegrity model firstly considers the cytoskeleton as a whole architectural structure to investigate cellular behaviors in response to mechanical stimulation. Furthermore, recent studies have suggested that cytoskeleton may function as electric cables and plays an important role in cellular responses to electric fields. In this review, we summarize recent studies about the role of cytoskeleton in view of tensegrity and discuss how cytoskeleton functions as cables in cellular response to electric fields. Understanding this process will be helpful to find out the detail of electroporation and other electric effect by application of electric stimulation.