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Myoglobin, a haemoprotein is processed from the 154 pro-peptide coded by the 3 exon MB gene at 22q12.3. It provides an oxygen reserve for muscle metabolism and is regulated via Ca2+ signalling pathways involving calcineurin. Myoglobin in vascular smooth muscle cells is a major source of the vasodilator signal molecule nitric oxide by the reduction of endogenous nitrite under hypoxic conditions, while in aerobic conditions nitric oxide is produced by endothelial nitric oxide synthase.

Muscle damage can release a renotoxic myoglobulin load, the potential for which is often evaluated by measuring creatine kinase levels after muscle trauma, such as that caused by crush injury.

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