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The papers in this issue were contributed by close friends, the publication of this issue possible. Owing to some un- coworkers and pupils ofProfessor Setsuro Ebashi. They are expected troubles ofone ofthe editors (M. E. ) the publication dedicated to him to commemorate his great and pioneering ofthis issue has been greatly delayed, for which he sincerely contribution to the advancement of muscle physiology and apologizes to all the contributors and other editors. We biochemistry, which in course of time exerted a great in- believe that this issue reveals the present stateofresearch on fluence on the whole field oflife science. We would like to muscle and/or calcium that had been opened up by Professor express our cordial thanks to an the contributors who made Ebashi. Shoichi Imai, Niigata, Japan Makoto Endo, Saitama, Japan Iwao Ohtsuki, Fakuoka, Japan Molecular and Cellular Biochemistry 190: 3-4, 1999. Dedication Setsuro Ebashi was born in Tokyo on 31st August, 1922. There is aJapanese saying that 'Sandalwood is fragrant even in seed leaf. ' Genius displays itself even in childhood. Finishing the six-year course ofprimary school in five years and the five-year course ofmiddle school in four years, he entered the First High School, the most prestigious high school in Japan, at the age ofonly 15. In July 1942, when he was an undergraduate student of FacultyofMedicine,Tokyo Imperial University (now called University ofTokyo), he by chance visited the laboratory of Dr.