Launikonis Lab - Muscle research

The main interest of the lab is Excitation-Contraction Coupling and Calcium Regulation in Skeletal Muscle. The focus is to understand the mechanisms that (i) control calcium release during activity in muscle, and (ii) maintain calcium homeostasis in skeletal muscle fibres. Within this broad focus, the roles of ion channels, pumps and membrane lipid composition in skeletal muscle physiology are studied. Significant emphasis is given to how properties of the muscle change in disease and other stressed states. To unravel the physiological mechanisms that control skeletal muscle activity, imaging of muscle cell structures and calcium movements are performed.

We have recently started working human muscle fibres obtained from needle biopsies, in conjunction with our colleagues in The School of Human Movement. We hope to gain a greater understand of ionic regulation in human muscle health, exercise and disease states.

Lab head


  • Ryanodine receptor-related myopathies in human muscle.
  • Changes in calcium handling in human muscle with exercise.
  • The nucleus of skeletal muscle.
  • Calcium handling in the diaphragm muscle; and the effects of mechanical ventilation/preterm birth.


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