bims-moremu Biomed News
on Molecular regulators of muscle mass
Issue of 2021‒10‒03
forty-eight papers selected by
Anna Vainshtein
Craft Science Inc.

  1. Sci Rep. 2021 Sep 29. 11(1): 19361
      Muscle atrophy occurs in a variety of physiological and pathological conditions. Specific molecular networks that govern protein synthesis and degradation play important roles in controlling muscle mass under diverse catabolic states. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) were previously found to be regulators of protein synthesis and degradation, and their expressions in skeletal muscle were altered in muscle wasting conditions. However, functional roles of miRNAs in muscle atrophy are poorly understood. In this study, we generated tamoxifen-inducible Dicer knockout (iDicer KO) mice and subjected them to 2 weeks of single hindlimb denervation. The expression of Dicer mRNA was significantly reduced in muscle of the iDicer KO mice compared to that of WT mice. The loss of Dicer moderately reduced levels of muscle-enriched miRNAs, miR-1, miR-133a and miR-206 in both innervated and denervated muscles of the iDicer KO mice. We also found that the extent of denervation-induced muscle atrophy as well as changes of signaling molecules related to protein synthesis/degradation pathways in the iDicer KO mice were comparable to these in WT mice. Taken together, Dicer knockout in adult skeletal muscle did not affect denervation-induced muscle atrophy.
  2. Eur J Pharmacol. 2021 Sep 25. pii: S0014-2999(21)00684-1. [Epub ahead of print] 174528
      We previously demonstrated that donepezil, an anti-Alzheimer's disease drug, improved skeletal muscle atrophy by enhancing the angiogenesis of endothelial cells and activating the proliferation of satellite cells in a mouse model of peripheral arterial disease. However, the effect of donepezil on muscle differentiation during regeneration remains unclear. Therefore, we measured the expressions of myogenic regulatory factors and late muscle differentiation markers in donepezil-treated C2C12 myoblast cells before and after the induction of cell differentiation. The results indicate that the expressions of myogenin, troponin T (TnT) and myosin heavy chain (MyHC) were significantly increased and myotube formation was accelerated in donepezil-treated cells under the differentiation condition. However, the promotive effect of donepezil on muscle differentiation could not be reproduced by the addition of acetylcholine (ACh) and was not disrupted after treatment with ACh receptor blockers. Moreover, other kinds of acetylcholinesterase inhibitors failed to promote muscle differentiation in C2C12 cells. These results indicate that the specific characteristics of donepezil in the promotion of muscle differentiation are independent of its acetylcholinesterase-inhibitory action. We further found that donepezil induced an incremental shift of the cross-sectional area of myofibers and elevated the expressions of myogenin, TnT and MyHC in a mouse model of cardiotoxin injury. These results suggest that donepezil promotes the differentiation of muscle regeneration upon injury via the elevation of the expressions of myogenic regulatory factors and late muscle differentiation markers. Our findings suggest that donepezil can be a useful therapeutic agent for injured skeletal muscle treatment.
    Keywords:  Acetylcholinesterase inhibitor; Differentiation; Donepezil; Myogenic regulatory factors; Regeneration; Skeletal muscle
  3. Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Sep 10. pii: 9780. [Epub ahead of print]22(18):
      Mitigation of calcium-dependent destruction of skeletal muscle mitochondria is considered as a promising adjunctive therapy in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD). In this work, we study the effect of intraperitoneal administration of a non-immunosuppressive inhibitor of calcium-dependent mitochondrial permeability transition (MPT) pore alisporivir on the state of skeletal muscles and the functioning of mitochondria in dystrophin-deficient mdx mice. We show that treatment with alisporivir reduces inflammation and improves muscle function in mdx mice. These effects of alisporivir were associated with an improvement in the ultrastructure of mitochondria, normalization of respiration and oxidative phosphorylation, and a decrease in lipid peroxidation, due to suppression of MPT pore opening and an improvement in calcium homeostasis. The action of alisporivir was associated with suppression of the activity of cyclophilin D and a decrease in its expression in skeletal muscles. This was observed in both mdx mice and wild-type animals. At the same time, alisporivir suppressed mitochondrial biogenesis, assessed by the expression of Ppargc1a, and altered the dynamics of organelles, inhibiting both DRP1-mediated fission and MFN2-associated fusion of mitochondria. The article discusses the effects of alisporivir administration and cyclophilin D inhibition on mitochondrial reprogramming and networking in DMD and the consequences of this therapy on skeletal muscle health.
    Keywords:  Debio-025; Duchenne muscular dystrophy; alisporivir; cyclophilin D; mitochondria; mitochondrial permeability transition; skeletal muscle
  4. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2021 Sep 20. pii: S0006-291X(21)01331-0. [Epub ahead of print]578 115-121
      Earth's gravity is essential for maintaining skeletal muscle mass and function in the body. The role of gravity in the myogenic mechanism has been studied with animal experiments in the International Space Station. Recently, gravity-control devices allow to study the effects of gravity on cultured cells on the ground. This study demonstrated that simulated microgravity accelerated aging of human skeletal muscle myoblasts in an in-vitro culture. The microgravity culture induced a significant decrease in cell proliferation and an enlargement of the cytoskeleton and nucleus of cells. Similar changes are often observed in aged myoblasts following several passages. In fact, by the microgravity culture the expression of senescence associated β-Gal was significantly enhanced, and some muscle-specific proteins decreased in the enlarged cells. Importantly, these microgravity effects remained with the cells even after a return to normal gravity conditions. Consequently, the microgravity-affected myoblasts demonstrated a reduced capability of differentiation into myotubes. In the body, it is difficult to interpret the disability of microgravity-affected myoblasts, since muscle regeneration is linked to the supply of new myogenic cells. Therefore, our in-vitro cell culture study will be advantageous to better understand the role of each type of myogenic cell in human muscle without gravitational stress at the single cell level.
    Keywords:  Cellular aging; Human skeletal muscle myoblast; Muscle atrophy; Myotube; Simulated microgravity; Single cell level
  5. Cell Death Discov. 2020 Sep 29. 6(1): 95
      Muscle-specific adult stem cells (MuSCs) are required for skeletal muscle regeneration. To ensure efficient skeletal muscle regeneration after injury, MuSCs must undergo state transitions as they are activated from quiescence, give rise to a population of proliferating myoblasts, and continue either to terminal differentiation, to repair or replace damaged myofibers, or self-renewal to repopulate the quiescent population. Changes in MuSC/myoblast state are accompanied by dramatic shifts in their transcriptional profile. Previous reports in other adult stem cell systems have identified alterations in the most abundant internal mRNA modification, N6-methyladenosine (m6A), conferred by its active writer, METTL3, to regulate cell state transitions through alterations in the transcriptional profile of these cells. Our objective was to determine if m6A-modification deposition via METTL3 is a regulator of MuSC/myoblast state transitions in vitro and in vivo. Using liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry we identified that global m6A levels increase during the early stages of skeletal muscle regeneration, in vivo, and decline when C2C12 myoblasts transition from proliferation to differentiation, in vitro. Using m6A-specific RNA-sequencing (MeRIP-seq), a distinct profile of m6A-modification was identified, distinguishing proliferating from differentiating C2C12 myoblasts. RNAi studies show that reducing levels of METTL3, the active m6A methyltransferase, reduced global m6A levels and forced C2C12 myoblasts to prematurely differentiate. Reducing levels of METTL3 in primary mouse MuSCs prior to transplantation enhanced their engraftment capacity upon primary transplantation, however their capacity for serial transplantation was lost. In conclusion, METTL3 regulates m6A levels in MuSCs/myoblasts and controls the transition of MuSCs/myoblasts to different cell states. Furthermore, the first transcriptome wide map of m6A-modifications in proliferating and differentiating C2C12 myoblasts is provided and reveals a number of genes that may regulate MuSC/myoblast state transitions which had not been previously identified.
  6. Cell Regen. 2021 Oct 01. 10(1): 31
      In vertebrates, the skeletal muscles of the body and their associated stem cells originate from muscle progenitor cells, during development. The specification of the muscles of the trunk, head and limbs, relies on the activity of distinct genetic hierarchies. The major regulators of trunk and limb muscle specification are the paired-homeobox transcription factors PAX3 and PAX7. Distinct gene regulatory networks drive the formation of the different muscles of the head. Despite the redeployment of diverse upstream regulators of muscle progenitor differentiation, the commitment towards the myogenic fate requires the expression of the early myogenic regulatory factors MYF5, MRF4, MYOD and the late differentiation marker MYOG. The expression of these genes is activated by muscle progenitors throughout development, in several waves of myogenic differentiation, constituting the embryonic, fetal and postnatal phases of muscle growth. In order to achieve myogenic cell commitment while maintaining an undifferentiated pool of muscle progenitors, several signaling pathways regulate the switch between proliferation and differentiation of myoblasts. The identification of the gene regulatory networks operating during myogenesis is crucial for the development of in vitro protocols to differentiate pluripotent stem cells into myoblasts required for regenerative medicine.
    Keywords:  ESC; MRF; MYF5; MYOD; MYOG; Muscle progenitor; Myogenesis; PAX3; PAX7; hiPSC
  7. Biomolecules. 2021 Sep 08. pii: 1327. [Epub ahead of print]11(9):
      The majority of critically ill intensive care unit (ICU) patients with severe sepsis develop ICU-acquired weakness (ICUAW) characterized by loss of muscle mass, reduction in myofiber size and decreased muscle strength leading to persisting physical impairment. This phenotype results from a dysregulated protein homeostasis with increased protein degradation and decreased protein synthesis, eventually causing a decrease in muscle structural proteins. The ubiquitin proteasome system (UPS) is the predominant protein-degrading system in muscle that is activated during diverse muscle atrophy conditions, e.g., inflammation. The specificity of UPS-mediated protein degradation is assured by E3 ubiquitin ligases, such as atrogin-1 and MuRF1, which target structural and contractile proteins, proteins involved in energy metabolism and transcription factors for UPS-dependent degradation. Although the regulation of activity and function of E3 ubiquitin ligases in inflammation-induced muscle atrophy is well perceived, the contribution of the proteasome to muscle atrophy during inflammation is still elusive. During inflammation, a shift from standard- to immunoproteasome was described; however, to which extent this contributes to muscle wasting and whether this changes targeting of specific muscular proteins is not well described. This review summarizes the function of the main proinflammatory cytokines and acute phase response proteins and their signaling pathways in inflammation-induced muscle atrophy with a focus on UPS-mediated protein degradation in muscle during sepsis. The regulation and target-specificity of the main E3 ubiquitin ligases in muscle atrophy and their mode of action on myofibrillar proteins will be reported. The function of the standard- and immunoproteasome in inflammation-induced muscle atrophy will be described and the effects of proteasome-inhibitors as treatment strategies will be discussed.
    Keywords:  ICUAW; autoinflammation; muscle wasting; proteostasis in skeletal muscle; ubiquitin-proteasome system
  8. Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Sep 16. pii: 10023. [Epub ahead of print]22(18):
      Sarcopenia is a loss of muscle mass and function in elderly people and can lead to physical frailty and fall-related injuries. Sarcopenia is an inevitable event of the aging process that substantially impacts a person's quality of life. Recent studies to improve muscle function through the intake of various functional food materials are attracting attention. However, it is not yet known whether probiotics can improve muscle mass and muscle strength and affect physical performance. Lactobacillus plantarum HY7715 (HY7715) is a lactic acid bacteria isolated from kimchi. The present research shows that L. plantarum HY7715 increases physical performance and skeletal muscle mass in 80-week-old aged Balb/c male mice. HY7715 not only induces myoblast differentiation and mitochondrial biogenesis but also inhibits the sarcopenic process in skeletal muscle. In addition, HY7715 recovers the microbiome composition and beta-diversity shift. Therefore, HY7715 has promise as a functional probiotic supplement to improve the degeneration of muscle function that is associated with aging.
    Keywords:  Lactobacillus plantarum HY7715; aging; probiotics; sarcopenia; skeletal muscle
  9. Sci Rep. 2021 Sep 27. 11(1): 19116
      Obesity induces skeletal muscle dysfunction. The pathogenesis of which appears to substantially involve mitochondrial dysfunction, arising from impaired quality control. Exercise is a major therapeutic strategy against muscle dysfunction. Trimetazidine, a partial inhibitor of lipid oxidation, has been proposed as a metabolic modulator for several cardiovascular pathologies. However, the effects of Trimetazidine on regulating skeletal muscle function are largely unknown. Our present study used cell culture and obese mice models to test a novel hypothesis that Trimetazidine could improve muscle atrophy with similar results to exercise. In C2C12 cells, high palmitic acid-induced atrophy and mitochondrial dysfunction, which could be reversed by the treatment of Trimetazidine. In our animal models, with high-fat diet-induced obesity associated with skeletal muscle atrophy, Trimetazidine prevented muscle dysfunction, corrected metabolic abnormalities, and improved mitochondrial quality control and mitochondrial functions similarly to exercise. Thus, our study suggests that Trimetazidine successfully mimics exercise to enhance mitochondrial quality control leading to improved high-fat diet-induced muscle dysfunction.
  10. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2021 Sep 29.
      Several chronic diseases lead to skeletal muscle loss and a decline in physical performance. MicroRNAs (miRNA) are small, non-coding RNAs, which has exhibited its role in the development and diseased state of the skeletal muscle. miRNA regulates gene expression by binding to the 3' untranslated region of its target mRNA. Due to the robust stability in biological fluids, miRNAs are ideal candidate as biomarker. These miRNAs provide a novel avenue in strengthening our awareness and knowledge about the factors governing skeletal muscle functions such as, development, growth, metabolism, differentiation and cell proliferation. It also helps in understanding the therapeutic strategies in improving or conserving skeletal muscle health. This review outlines the evidence regarding the present knowledge on the role miRNA as a potential biomarker in skeletal muscle diseases and their exploration might be a unique and potential therapeutic strategy for various skeletal muscle disorders.
    Keywords:  Biomarker; MyomiR; Nutrimiromics; Skeletal Muscle Atrophy; Therapeutics
  11. STAR Protoc. 2021 Dec 17. 2(4): 100830
      Measurements of telomere length in skeletal muscle stem cells (MuSCs), a rare cell population within muscles, provide insights into cellular dysfunction in diseased conditions. Here, we describe a protocol (cryosection muscle quantitative fluorescent in situhybridization) using skeletal muscle cryosections for assessments of telomere length in MuSCs, in their native environment. Using a free software, telomere length measurements are assessed on a single-cell level. We also provide methodology to perform data analyses in several ways. For complete details on the use and execution of this protocol, please refer to Tichy et al. (2021).
    Keywords:  Cell Biology; Cell isolation; Cell-based Assays; In Situ Hybridization; Microscopy; Stem Cells
  12. Cells. 2021 Sep 08. pii: 2356. [Epub ahead of print]10(9):
      Current knowledge on store-operated Ca2+ entry (SOCE) regarding its localization, kinetics, and regulation is mostly derived from studies performed in non-excitable cells. After a long time of relative disinterest in skeletal muscle SOCE, this mechanism is now recognized as an essential contributor to muscle physiology, as highlighted by the muscle pathologies that are associated with mutations in the SOCE molecules STIM1 and Orai1. This review mainly focuses on the peculiar aspects of skeletal muscle SOCE that differentiate it from its counterpart found in non-excitable cells. This includes questions about SOCE localization and the movement of respective proteins in the highly organized skeletal muscle fibers, as well as the diversity of expressed STIM isoforms and their differential expression between muscle fiber types. The emerging evidence of a phasic SOCE, which is activated during EC coupling, and its physiological implication is described as well. The specific issues related to the use of SOCE modulators in skeletal muscles are discussed. This review highlights the complexity of SOCE activation and its regulation in skeletal muscle, with an emphasis on the most recent findings and the aim to reach a current picture of this mesmerizing phenomenon.
    Keywords:  Ca2+ entry sites; Orai; SOCE pharmacology; STIM; phasic SOCE; skeletal muscle; store-operated Ca2+ entry
  13. FASEB J. 2021 Oct;35(10): e21948
      Aminoacyl-tRNA synthetases (aaRSs) are house-keeping enzymes that are essential for protein synthesis. However, it has become increasingly evident that some aaRSs also have non-translational functions. Here we report the identification of a non-translational function of threonyl-tRNA synthetase (ThrRS) in myogenic differentiation. We find that ThrRS negatively regulates myoblast differentiation in vitro and injury-induced skeletal muscle regeneration in vivo. This function is independent of amino acid binding or aminoacylation activity of ThrRS, and knockdown of ThrRS leads to enhanced differentiation without affecting the global protein synthesis rate. Furthermore, we show that the non-catalytic new domains (UNE-T and TGS) of ThrRS are both necessary and sufficient for the myogenic function. In searching for a molecular mechanism of this new function, we find the kinase JNK to be a downstream target of ThrRS. Our data further reveal MEKK4 and MKK4 as upstream regulators of JNK in myogenesis and the MEKK4-MKK4-JNK pathway to be a mediator of the myogenic function of ThrRS. Finally, we show that ThrRS physically interacts with Axin1, disrupts Axin1-MEKK4 interaction and consequently inhibits JNK signaling. In conclusion, we uncover a non-translational function for ThrRS in the maintenance of homeostasis of skeletal myogenesis and identify the Axin1-MEKK4-MKK4-JNK signaling axis to be an immediate target of ThrRS action.
    Keywords:  JNK signaling; myoblast; myogenesis; skeletal muscle regeneration; threonyl-tRNA synthetase
  14. Cells. 2021 Sep 15. pii: 2436. [Epub ahead of print]10(9):
      We hypothesized that the phenolic compound resveratrol mitigates muscle protein degradation and loss and improves muscle fiber cross-sectional area (CSA) in gastrocnemius of mice exposed to unloading (7dI). In gastrocnemius of mice (female C57BL/6J, 10 weeks) exposed to a seven-day period of hindlimb immobilization with/without resveratrol treatment, markers of muscle proteolysis (tyrosine release, systemic troponin-I), atrophy signaling pathways, and muscle phenotypic features and function were analyzed. In gastrocnemius of unloaded mice treated with resveratrol, body and muscle weight and function were attenuated, whereas muscle proteolysis (tyrosine release), proteolytic and apoptotic markers, atrophy signaling pathways, and myofiber CSA significantly improved. Resveratrol treatment of mice exposed to a seven-day period of unloading prevented body and muscle weight and limb strength loss, while an improvement in muscle proteolysis, proteolytic markers, atrophy signaling pathways, apoptosis, and muscle fiber CSA was observed in the gastrocnemius muscle. These findings may have potential therapeutic implications in the management of disuse muscle atrophy in clinical settings.
    Keywords:  apoptosis; atrophy signaling pathways; chronic conditions; disuse muscle atrophy; limb muscles; muscle fiber cross-sectional areas; proteolysis; resveratrol
  15. J Physiol. 2021 Sep 26.
      KEY POINTS: Dysbiosis of the gut microbiome caused by continuous antibiotic treatment did not affect running activity. Continuous treatment with antibiotics did not result in systemic inflammation as indicated by serum cytokine levels. Gut microbiome dysbiosis was associated with blunted fiber-type specific hypertrophy in the soleus and plantaris muscles in response to progressive weighted wheel running (PoWeR). Gut microbiome dysbiosis was associated with impaired PoWeR-induced fiber-type shift in the plantaris muscle. Gut microbiome dysbiosis was associated with a loss of PoWeR-induced myonuclei accretion in the plantaris muscle.ABSTRACT: There is emerging evidence of a gut microbiome-skeletal muscle axis. The purpose of this study was to determine if an intact gut microbiome was necessary for skeletal muscle adaption to exercise. Forty-two, four-month old female C57BL/6J mice were randomly assigned to either untreated (U) or antibiotic-treated (T), non-running controls (CU or CT, respectively) or progressive weighted wheel running (PoWeR, P) untreated (PU) or antibiotic-treated (PT). Antibiotic treatment resulted in disruption of the gut microbiome as indicated by a significant depletion of gut microbiome bacterial species in both CT and PT groups. The training stimulus was the same between PU and PT groups as assessed by weekly (12.35 ± 2.06 km/wk vs 11.09 ± 1.76 km/week, respectively) and total (778.9 ± 130.5 km vs 703.8 ± 112.9 km, respectively) running activity. In response to PoWeR, PT showed less hypertrophy of soleus Type 1 and 2a fibers and plantaris Type 2b/x fibers compared to PU. The higher satellite cell and myonuclei abundance of PU plantaris muscle after PoWeR was not observed in PT. The fiber-type shift of PU plantaris muscle to a more oxidative Type 2a fiber composition following PoWeR was blunted in PT. There was no difference in serum cytokine levels among all groups suggesting disruption of the gut microbiome did not induce systemic inflammation. The results of this study provide the first evidence that an intact gut microbiome is necessary for skeletal muscle adaptation to exercise. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Keywords:  dysbiosis; exercise; gut microbiome; hypertrophy; skeletal muscle
  16. Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2021 Sep 29.
      Though preclinical models of type 1 diabetes (T1D) exhibit impaired muscle regeneration, this has yet to be investigated in humans with T1D. Here we investigated the impact of damaging exercise (eccentric quadriceps contractions) in eighteen physically-active young adults with and without T1D. Pre- and post-exercise (48h and 96h), participants provided blood samples, vastus lateralis biopsies and performed maximal voluntary quadriceps contractions (MVC). Skeletal muscle sarcolemmal integrity, extracellular matrix content (ECM), and satellite cell (SC) content/proliferation were assessed by immunofluorescence. Transmission electron microscopy was used to quantify ultrastructural damage. MVC was comparable between T1D and controls before exercise. Post-exercise, MVC was decreased in both groups, but T1D subjects exhibited moderately lower strength recovery at both 48h and 96h. Serum creatine kinase, an indicator of muscle damage, was moderately higher in T1D participants at rest, and exhibited a small elevation 96h post-exercise. T1D participants showed lower SC content at all timepoints and demonstrated a moderate delay in SC proliferation after exercise. A greater number of myofibers exhibited sarcolemmal damage (disrupted dystrophin) and increased ECM (laminin) content in participants with T1D despite no differences between groups in ultrastructural damage as assessed by electron microscopy. Finally, transcriptomic analyses revealed dysregulated gene networks involving RNA translation and mitochondrial respiration, providing potential explanations for previous observations of mitochondrial dysfunction in similar T1D cohorts. Our findings indicate that skeletal muscle in young adults with moderately-controlled T1D is altered after damaging exercise; suggesting that longer recovery times following intense exercise may be necessary.
    Keywords:  Myopathy; Regeneration; Skeletal muscle; T1D; Type 1 Diabetes
  17. Exp Cell Res. 2021 Sep 24. pii: S0014-4827(21)00398-0. [Epub ahead of print] 112844
      Muscular dystrophies are a heterogeneous group of monogenic neuromuscular disorders which lead to progressive muscle loss and degeneration of the musculoskeletal system. The genetic causes of muscular dystrophies are well characterized, but no effective treatments have been developed so far. The discovery and application of the CRISPR/Cas system for genome editing offers a new path for disease treatment with the potential to permanently correct genetic mutations. The post-mitotic and multinucleated features of skeletal muscle provide an ideal target for CRISPR/Cas therapeutic genome editing because correction of a subpopulation of nuclei can provide benefit to the whole myofiber. In this review, we provide an overview of the CRISPR/Cas system and its derivatives in genome editing, proposing potential CRISPR/Cas-based therapies to correct diverse muscular dystrophies, and we discuss challenges for translating CRISPR/Cas genome editing to a viable therapy for permanent correction of muscular dystrophies.
    Keywords:  Duchenne muscular dystrophy; Facioscapulohumeral muscular dystrophy; Limb-girdle muscular dystrophy; genome editing; sgRNA; skeletal muscle
  18. J Agric Food Chem. 2021 Sep 29.
      Naringin, a natural flavonoid mainly found in citrus fruit, has been reported to exert a positive effect on improving skeletal muscle health. However, the effects and potential mechanisms of naringin on skeletal muscle fiber switching is still unclear. Here, we discovered that oral administration of naringin increased the low-speed running time, four-limb hanging time, body oxygen consumption in mice, enhanced aerobic enzyme activity, MyHC I expression, and slow-twitch fiber percentage in mice skeletal muscle. By contrast, naringin decreased α-GPDH enzyme activity, MyHC IIb expression, and fast-twitch fiber percentage. Moreover, naringin increased the concentration of serum adiponectin and activated the expression of AdipoR1, APPL1, AMPK, and PGC-1α. Furthermore, by the in vitro experiment and AdipoR1 knockdown, we found that inhibition of the AdipoR1 signaling pathway significantly reduced the effect of naringin on slow-twitch fiber-/fast-twitch fiber-related gene and protein expression. In conclusion, our results indicated that naringin could induce skeletal muscle fiber transition from fast twitch to slow twitch via the AdipoR1 signaling pathway. This study may provide new strategy for improving exercise endurance and slow muscle fiber deficiency-related diseases.
    Keywords:  AdipoR1 pathway; fiber type; naringin; skeletal muscle
  19. Cells. 2021 Sep 19. pii: 2480. [Epub ahead of print]10(9):
      Plectin is a giant cytoskeletal crosslinker and intermediate filament stabilizing protein. Mutations in the human plectin gene (PLEC) cause several rare diseases that are grouped under the term plectinopathies. The most common disorder is autosomal recessive disease epidermolysis bullosa simplex with muscular dystrophy (EBS-MD), which is characterized by skin blistering and progressive muscle weakness. Besides EBS-MD, PLEC mutations lead to EBS with nail dystrophy, EBS-MD with a myasthenic syndrome, EBS with pyloric atresia, limb-girdle muscular dystrophy type R17, or EBS-Ogna. In this review, we focus on the clinical and pathological manifestations caused by PLEC mutations on skeletal and cardiac muscle. Skeletal muscle biopsies from EBS-MD patients and plectin-deficient mice revealed severe dystrophic features with variation in fiber size, degenerative myofibrillar changes, mitochondrial alterations, and pathological desmin-positive protein aggregates. Ultrastructurally, PLEC mutations lead to a disorganization of myofibrils and sarcomeres, Z- and I-band alterations, autophagic vacuoles and cytoplasmic bodies, and misplaced and degenerating mitochondria. We also summarize a variety of genetically manipulated mouse and cell models, which are either plectin-deficient or that specifically lack a skeletal muscle-expressed plectin isoform. These models are powerful tools to study functional and molecular consequences of PLEC defects and their downstream effects on the skeletal muscle organization.
    Keywords:  desmin; intermediate filaments; muscular dystrophy; myopathology; plectin; sarcomere structure
  20. Front Physiol. 2021 ;12 736708
      Vitamin D (VD) deficiency is associated with muscle weakness. A reduction in the incidence of falls in the elderly following VD supplementation and identification of the VD receptor within muscle cells suggests a direct effect of VD on muscle, but little is known about the underlying mechanisms. Here we systematically searched the literature to identify effects of active VD [1,25(OH)2D3] on skeletal muscle myogenesis in vitro, with no restriction on year of publication. Eligibility was assessed by strict inclusion/exclusion criteria and agreed by two independent investigators. Twelve relevant pa-pers were identified using four different cell types (C2C12, primary mouse satellite cells, primary chick myoblasts, and primary human myoblasts) and a range of myogenic markers (myoD, myogenin, creatine kinase, myosin heavy chain, and myotube size). A clear inhibitory effect of 1,25(OH)2D3 on proliferation was reported, while the effects on the different stages of differentiation were less consistent probably due to variation in cell type, time points and doses of 1,25(OH)2D3 used. However, myotube size was consistently increased by 1,25(OH)2D3. Overall, the evidence suggests that 1,25(OH)2D3 inhibits proliferation and promotes differentiation of myoblasts, but future studies should use time courses to gain a clearer understanding.
    Keywords:  25-dihydroxyvitamin D3; 25-hydroxyvitamin D2; MyoD; differentiation; myogenesis; myogenin; systematic review; vitamin D
  21. Metabolites. 2021 Sep 19. pii: 642. [Epub ahead of print]11(9):
      Homer represents a diversified family of scaffold and transduction proteins made up of several isoforms. Here, we present preliminary observations on skeletal muscle adaptation and plasticity in a transgenic model of Homer 2-/- mouse using a multifaceted approach entailing morphometry, quantitative RT-PCR (Reverse Transcription PCR), confocal immunofluorescence, and electrophysiology. Morphometry shows that Soleus muscle (SOL), at variance with Extensor digitorum longus muscle (EDL) and Flexor digitorum brevis muscle (FDB), displays sizable reduction of fibre cross-sectional area compared to the WT counterparts. In SOL of Homer 2-/- mice, quantitative RT-PCR indicated the upregulation of Atrogin-1 and Muscle ring finger protein 1 (MuRF1) genes, and confocal immunofluorescence showed the decrease of neuromuscular junction (NMJ) Homer content. Electrophysiological measurements of isolated FDB fibres from Homer 2-/- mice detected the exclusive presence of the adult ε-nAChR isoform excluding denervation. As for NMJ morphology, data were not conclusive, and further work is needed to ascertain whether the null Homer 2 phenotype induces any endplate remodelling. Within the context of adaptation and plasticity, the present data show that Homer 2 is a co-regulator of the normotrophic status in a muscle specific fashion.
    Keywords:  Homer 2; atrophy; neuromuscular junction; skeletal muscle
  22. Nutrients. 2021 Aug 25. pii: 2950. [Epub ahead of print]13(9):
      Maslinic acid (MA) is a pentacyclic triterpene abundant in olive peels. MA reportedly increases skeletal muscle mass and strength in older adults; however, the underlying mechanism is unknown. This study aimed to investigate the effects of MA on denervated muscle atrophy and strength and to explore the underlying molecular mechanism. Mice were fed either a control diet or a 0.27% MA diet. One week after intervention, the sciatic nerves of both legs were cut to induce muscle atrophy. Mice were examined 14 days after denervation. MA prevented the denervation-induced reduction in gastrocnemius muscle mass and skeletal muscle strength. Microarray gene expression profiling in gastrocnemius muscle demonstrated several potential mechanisms for muscle maintenance. Gene set enrichment analysis (GSEA) revealed different enriched biological processes, such as myogenesis, PI3/AKT/mTOR signaling, TNFα signaling via NF-κB, and TGF-β signaling in MA-treated mice. In addition, qPCR data showed that MA induced Igf1 expression and suppressed the expressions of Atrogin-1, Murf1 and Tgfb. Altogether, our results suggest the potential of MA as a new therapeutic and preventive dietary ingredient for muscular atrophy and strength.
    Keywords:  denervation; maslinic acid; muscle atrophy; muscle strength; olive peel
  23. J Tissue Eng. 2021 Jan-Dec;12:12 20417314211032491
      Peripheral nerve injury and the associated muscle atrophy has an estimated annual healthcare burden of $150 billion dollars in the United States. When considering the total annual health-related spending of $3.5 trillion, these pathologies alone occupy about 4.3%. The prevalence of these ailments is rooted, at least in part, in the lack of specific preventative therapies that can be administered to muscle while it remains in the denervated state. To address this, skeletal muscle-derived ECM (skECM) was injected directly in denervated muscle with postoperative analysis performed at 20 weeks, including gait analysis, force production, cytokine quantification, and histological analysis. skECM was shown to be superior against non-injected muscle controls showing no difference in contraction force to uninjured muscle at 20 weeks. Cytokines IL-1β, IL-18, and IFNγ appeared to mediate regeneration with statistical regression implicating these cytokines as strong predictors of muscle contraction, showing significant linear correlation.
    Keywords:  FDA regulation; Peripheral nerve injury; inflammatory cytokines; linear correlation and regression; muscle atrophy; skeletal muscle extracellular matrix
  24. Brain Sci. 2021 Sep 20. pii: 1245. [Epub ahead of print]11(9):
      Sarcopenia, a geriatric syndrome involving loss of muscle mass and strength, is often associated with the early phases of Alzheimer's disease (AD). Pathological hallmarks of AD including amyloid β (Aβ) aggregates which can be found in peripheral tissues such as skeletal muscle. However, not much is currently known about their possible involvement in sarcopenia. We investigated neuronal innervation in skeletal muscle of Tg2576 mice, a genetic model for Aβ accumulation. We examined cholinergic innervation of skeletal muscle in adult Tg2576 and wild type mice by immunofluorescence labeling of tibialis anterior (TA) muscle sections using antibodies raised against neurofilament light chain (NFL) and acetylcholine (ACh) synthesizing enzyme choline acetyltransferase (ChAT). Combining this histological approach with real time quantification of mRNA levels of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors, we demonstrated that in the TA of Tg2576 mice, neuronal innervation is significantly reduced and synaptic area is smaller and displays less ChAT content when compared to wild type mice. Our study provides the first evidence of reduced cholinergic innervation of skeletal muscle in a mouse model of Aβ accumulation. This evidence sustains the possibility that sarcopenia in AD originates from Aβ-mediated cholinergic loss.
    Keywords:  Alzheimer’s disease; choline acetyltransferase; cholinergic innervation; neurofilament; sarcopenia; skeletal muscle
  25. Cell Metab. 2021 Sep 23. pii: S1550-4131(21)00422-8. [Epub ahead of print]
      Endurance exercise promotes skeletal muscle vascularization, oxidative metabolism, fiber-type switching, and neuromuscular junction integrity. Importantly, the metabolic and contractile properties of the muscle fiber must be coupled to the identity of the innervating motor neuron (MN). Here, we show that muscle-derived neurturin (NRTN) acts on muscle fibers and MNs to couple their characteristics. Using a muscle-specific NRTN transgenic mouse (HSA-NRTN) and RNA sequencing of MN somas, we observed that retrograde NRTN signaling promotes a shift toward a slow MN identity. In muscle, NRTN increased capillary density and oxidative capacity and induced a transcriptional reprograming favoring fatty acid metabolism over glycolysis. This combination of effects on muscle and MNs makes HSA-NRTN mice lean with remarkable exercise performance and motor coordination. Interestingly, HSA-NRTN mice largely recapitulate the phenotype of mice with muscle-specific expression of its upstream regulator PGC-1ɑ1. This work identifies NRTN as a myokine that couples muscle oxidative capacity to slow MN identity.
    Keywords:  PGC-1; diabetes; exercise; motor coordination; motor neuron; myokines; neuromuscular junction; neurturin; oxidative metabolism; skeletal muscle
  26. Front Physiol. 2021 ;12 709135
      The glycolytic product of exercise, lactate, has long been recognized to promote lipid accumulation by activation of G-protein-coupled receptor 81 (GPR81) and inhibition of the cyclic adenosine monophosphate-protein kinase A (cAMP -PKA) pathway in adipose tissue. Whether lactate causes a similar process in skeletal muscle is unclear. Lactate might also improve mitochondria content in skeletal muscle; however, the mechanism is not clarified either. In this study, using intramuscular injection of lactate to the gastrocnemius and intraperitoneal injection of forskolin (activator of cAMP-PKA pathway), we identified the role of the cAMP-PKA pathway in lactate-induced intramuscular triglyceride accumulation and mitochondrial content increase. The intramuscular triglyceride level in the gastrocnemius increased after 5weeks of lactate injection (p<0.05), and this effect was blocked by forskolin injection (p<0.05). Corresponding expression level changes of GPR81, P-PKA/PKA, P-CREB/cAMP-response element binding protein (CREB), and proteins related to lipid metabolism suggest that lactate could induce intramuscular triglyceride accumulation partly through the inhibition of the cAMP-PKA pathway. Meanwhile, the intramuscular expression of citrate synthase (CS) and the activity of CS increased after 5weeks of lactate injection (p<0.05), but the change of CS expression was not blocked by forskolin injection, suggesting other mechanisms might exist. Consequently, exploration for other potential mechanisms that might contribute to the lactate-induced mitochondria content increase was conducted. We found an increase in the contents of lactate-related metabolites in skeletal muscle mitochondria after acute lactate injection (the p-value of each analysis is less than 0.05). LHDA was also validated to exist in mitochondria in this study. These results provide a possibility for metabolism-related mechanisms of lactate-induced mitochondria content increase. Future study is needed to validate this hypothesis. In conclusion, lactate-induced intramuscular triglyceride accumulation is achieved by inhibition of lipolysis, and this process is regulated by the cAMP-PKA pathway. Promoted lipogenesis also contributes to lactate-induced triglyceride accumulation, and this process might also be regulated by the cAMP-PKA pathway. Lactate injection might increase mitochondria content and cAMP-PKA pathway might have a limited contribution, while other metabolism-related mechanisms might play a prominent role.
    Keywords:  cAMP; intramuscular triglyceride; lactate; mitochondria content; skeletal muscle
  27. Pharmaceutics. 2021 Sep 18. pii: 1506. [Epub ahead of print]13(9):
      Muscular dystrophy is a progressively worsening and lethal disease, where accumulation of functionality-impairing fibrosis plays a key pathogenic role. Transforming growth factor-β1 (TGFβ1) is a central signaling molecule in the development of fibrosis in muscular dystrophic humans and mice. Inhibition of TGFβ1 has proven beneficial in mouse models of muscular dystrophy, but the global strategies of TGFβ1 inhibition produce significant detrimental side effects. Here, we investigated whether murine muscular dystrophy lesion-specific inhibition of TGFβ1 signaling by the targeted delivery of therapeutic decorin (a natural TGFβ inhibitor) by a vascular homing peptide CAR (CARSKNKDC) would reduce skeletal muscle fibrosis and pathology and increase functional characteristics of skeletal muscle. We demonstrate that CAR peptide homes to dystrophic lesions with specificity in two muscular dystrophy models. Recombinant fusion protein consisting of CAR peptide and decorin homes selectively to sites of skeletal muscle damage in mdxDBA2/J and gamma-sarcoglycan deficient DBA2/J mice. This targeted delivery reduced TGFβ1 signaling as demonstrated by reduced nuclear pSMAD staining. Three weeks of targeted decorin treatment decreased both membrane permeability and fibrosis and improved skeletal muscle function in comparison to control treatments in the mdxD2 mice. These results show that selective delivery of decorin to the sites of skeletal muscle damage attenuates the progression of murine muscular dystrophy.
    Keywords:  angiogenesis; cell penetrating peptide; decorin; extracellular matrix; fibrosis; inflammation; mdx; muscular dystrophy; proteoglycan; transforming growth factor-β1 (TGFβ1); vascular homing peptide
  28. Dev Dyn. 2021 Oct 02.
      BACKGROUND: Lamin A/C gene (LMNA) mutations frequently cause cardiac and/or skeletal muscle diseases called striated muscle laminopathies. We created a zebrafish muscular laminopathy model using CRISPR/Cas9 technology to target the zebrafish lmna gene.RESULTS: Heterozygous and homozygous lmna mutants present skeletal muscle damage at 1 day post fertilization (dpf), and mobility impairment at 4-7 dpf. Cardiac structure and function analyses between 1-7 dpf show mild and transient defects in the lmna mutants compared to wild type (WT). Quantitative RT-PCR analysis of genes implicated in striated muscle laminopathies show a decrease in jun and nfκb2 expression in 7 dpf homozygous lmna mutants compared to WT. Homozygous lmna mutants have a 1.26-fold protein increase in activated Erk 1/2, kinases associated with striated muscle laminopathies, compared to WT at 7 dpf. Activated Protein Kinase C alpha (Pkc α), a kinase that interacts with lamin A/C and Erk 1/2, is also upregulated in 7 dpf homozygous lmna mutants compared to WT.
    CONCLUSIONS: This study presents an animal model of skeletal muscle laminopathy where heterozygous and homozygous lmna mutants exhibit prominent skeletal muscle abnormalities during the first week of development. Furthermore, this is the first animal model that potentially implicates Pkc α in muscular laminopathies. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
    Keywords:  Emery-Dreifuss muscular dystrophy (EDMD); Protein Kinase C alpha (PKC α); striated muscle laminopathies
  29. Molecules. 2021 Sep 19. pii: 5685. [Epub ahead of print]26(18):
      DPY19L3 has been identified as a C-mannosyltransferase for thrombospondin type-1 repeat domain-containing proteins. In this study, we focused on the role of DPY19L3 in the myogenic differentiation of C2C12 mouse myoblast cells. We carried out DPY19L3 gene depletion using the CRISPR/Cas9 system. The result showed that these DPY19L3-knockout cells could not be induced for differentiation. Moreover, the phosphorylation levels of MEK/ERK and p70S6K were suppressed in the DPY19L3-knockout cells compared with that of parent cells, suggesting that the protein(s) that is(are) DPY19L3-mediated C-mannosylated and regulate(s) MEK/ERK or p70S6K signaling is(are) required for the differentiation.
    Keywords:  C-mannosylation; DPY19L3; glycobiology; myogenic differentiation; myotube
  30. Life (Basel). 2021 Sep 21. pii: 994. [Epub ahead of print]11(9):
      Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is characterized by progressive muscle weakness and wasting due to the lack of dystrophin protein. The acute phase of DMD is characterized by muscle necrosis and increased levels of the pro-inflammatory mediator, prostaglandin D2 (PGD2). Inhibiting the production of PGD2 by inhibiting hematopoietic prostaglandin D synthase (HPGDS) may alleviate inflammation and decrease muscle necrosis. We tested our novel HPGDS inhibitor, PK007, in the mdx mouse model of DMD. Our results show that hindlimb grip strength was two-fold greater in the PK007-treated mdx group, compared to untreated mdx mice, and displayed similar muscle strength to strain control mice (C57BL/10ScSn). Histological analyses showed a decreased percentage of regenerating muscle fibers (~20% less) in tibialis anterior (TA) and gastrocnemius muscles and reduced fibrosis in the TA muscle in PK007-treated mice. Lastly, we confirmed that the DMD blood biomarker, muscle creatine kinase activity, was also reduced by ~50% in PK007-treated mdx mice. We conclude that our HPGDS inhibitor, PK007, has effectively reduced muscle inflammation and fibrosis in a DMD mdx mouse model.
    Keywords:  Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD); HPGDS; PGD2; inflammation; mdx; muscle creatine kinase (CK-MM); regenerating muscle fibers
  31. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2021 Oct 05. pii: e2026116118. [Epub ahead of print]118(40):
      The skeletal muscle L-type Ca2+ channel (CaV1.1) works primarily as a voltage sensor for skeletal muscle action potential (AP)-evoked Ca2+ release. CaV1.1 contains four distinct voltage-sensing domains (VSDs), yet the contribution of each VSD to AP-evoked Ca2+ release remains unknown. To investigate the role of VSDs in excitation-contraction coupling (ECC), we encoded cysteine substitutions on each S4 voltage-sensing segment of CaV1.1, expressed each construct via in vivo gene transfer electroporation, and used in cellulo AP fluorometry to track the movement of each CaV1.1 VSD in skeletal muscle fibers. We first provide electrical measurements of CaV1.1 voltage sensor charge movement in response to an AP waveform. Then we characterize the fluorescently labeled channels' VSD fluorescence signal responses to an AP and compare them with the waveforms of the electrically measured charge movement, the optically measured free myoplasmic Ca2+, and the calculated rate of Ca2+ release from the sarcoplasmic reticulum for an AP, the physiological signal for skeletal muscle fiber activation. A considerable fraction of the fluorescence signal for each VSD occurred after the time of peak Ca2+ release, and even more occurred after the earlier peak of electrically measured charge movement during an AP, and thus could not directly reflect activation of Ca2+ release or charge movement, respectively. However, a sizable fraction of the fluorometric signals for VSDs I, II, and IV, but not VSDIII, overlap the rising phase of charge moved, and even more for Ca2+ release, and thus could be involved in voltage sensor rearrangements or Ca2+ release activation.
    Keywords:  CaV1.1; action potential; excitation–contraction coupling; skeletal muscle; voltage sensor domain
  32. Mol Ther Nucleic Acids. 2021 Sep 03. 25 652-667
      Skeletal muscle symptoms strongly contribute to mortality of myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1) patients. DM1 is a neuromuscular genetic disease caused by CTG repeat expansions that, upon transcription, sequester the Muscleblind-like family of proteins and dysregulate alternative splicing of hundreds of genes. However, mis-splicing does not satisfactorily explain muscle atrophy and wasting, and several other contributing factors have been suggested, including hyperactivated autophagy leading to excessive catabolism. MicroRNA (miR)-7 has been demonstrated to be necessary and sufficient to repress the autophagy pathway in cell models of the disease, but the origin of its low levels in DM1 was unknown. We have found that the RNA-binding protein Musashi-2 (MSI2) is upregulated in patient-derived myoblasts and biopsy samples. Because it has been previously reported that MSI2 controls miR-7 biogenesis, we tested the hypothesis that excessive MSI2 was repressing miR-7 maturation. Using gene-silencing strategies (small interfering RNAs [siRNAs] and gapmers) and the small molecule MSI2-inhibitor Ro 08-2750, we demonstrate that reducing MSI2 levels or activity boosts miR-7 expression, represses excessive autophagy, and downregulates atrophy-related genes of the UPS system. We also detect a significant upregulation of MBNL1 upon MSI2 silencing. Taken together, we propose MSI2 as a new therapeutic target to treat muscle dysfunction in DM1.
    Keywords:  MSI2; antisense oligonucleotides; autophagy; miR-7; muscle atrophy; muscle dysfunction; myotonic dystrophy; myotubes
  33. Am Heart J Plus. 2021 May;pii: 100028. [Epub ahead of print]5
      Background: Statin use is widely recognized for improving cardiovascular health, but questions remain on how statin use influences skeletal muscle, particularly mitochondrial function.Study objective design and participants: The influence of statin therapy and exercise (EX) on aerobic capacity was determined. In Study1, skeletal muscle aerobic capacity was measured before and after 80 mg atorvastatin therapy. In Study2, aerobic capacity (skeletal muscle and whole body) was measured before and after a 12-week exercise randomized control trial in older adults (age = 67 ± 5 yrs.), a subset of which were on chronic low-moderate intensity statin therapy.
    Main outcome measures: Muscle oxidative capacity was determined from the phosphocreatine recovery rate constant (kPCr) using 31P Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy. Whole body peak oxygen uptake (VO2 peak) was measured during a graded exercise test with indirect calorimetry.
    Results: High dose statin therapy resulted in a 12% reduction in muscle oxidative capacity (pre = 1.34 ± 0.34 min-1, post = 1.17 ± 0.25 min-1, p = 0.004). Similarly, chronic low-moderate dose statin therapy was associated with lower muscle oxidative capacity at baseline (1.50 ± 0.35 min-1) compared to non-statin users (1.88 ± 0.047 min-1, p = 0.019). Following EX, muscle oxidative capacity increased by 35-40% (statin: Pre: 1.39 ± 0.44 vs. Post: 1.88 ± 0.47 min-1, no statin Pre: 1.86 ± 0.58 vs. Post: 2.58 ± 0.85 min-1) compared to control groups (Pre: 1.74 ± 0.27 vs Post: 1.75 ± 0.49 min-1, p = 0.001). VO2 peak increased by 11% for EX groups (Pre: 18.8 ± 2.8 vs. Post: 20.8 ± 3.0 ml·kg-1·min-1) following training compared to a small decline in controls (Pre: 21.8 ± 3.7 vs. Post: 20.8 ± 3.04 ml·kg-1·min-1, p = 0.001).
    Conclusions: Statin therapy resulted in reduced muscle oxidative capacity. Aerobic exercise improved skeletal muscle oxidative capacity and whole-body aerobic capacity during statin therapy.
    Keywords:  Aerobic exercise; Aging; Mitochondria function; Oxidative capacity; Skeletal muscle; VO2 peak
  34. Exp Gerontol. 2021 Sep 22. pii: S0531-5565(21)00343-0. [Epub ahead of print] 111561
      The number of adults 65 years and older is increasing worldwide and will represent the 20% of the population by 2030. Half of them will suffer from obesity. The decline in muscle mass and strength, known as sarcopenia, is very common among older adults with obesity (sarcopenic obesity). Sarcopenic obesity is strongly associated with frailty, cardiometabolic dysfunction, physical disability, and mortality. Increasing efforts have been hence made to identify effective strategies able to promote healthy aging and curb the obesity pandemic. Among these, lifestyle interventions consisting of diet and exercise protocols have been extensively explored. Importantly, diet-induced weight loss is associated with fat, muscle, and bone mass losses, and may further exacerbate age-related sarcopenia and frailty outcomes in older adults. Successful approaches to induce fat mass loss while preserving lean and bone mass are critical to reduce the aging- and obesity-related physical and metabolic complications and at the same time ameliorate frailty. In this review article, we discuss the most recent evidence on the age-related alterations in adipose tissue and muscle health and on the effect of calorie restriction and exercise approaches for older adults with obesity and sarcopenia, emphasizing the existing gaps in the literature that need further investigation.
    Keywords:  Adipose tissue; Diet; Elderly; Exercise; Frailty; Lifestyle interventions; Sarcopenia; Skeletal muscle
  35. Int J Mol Sci. 2021 Sep 10. pii: 9818. [Epub ahead of print]22(18):
      MicroRNAs (miRNAs) play an essential role in the regulation of a number of physiological functions. miR-133a and other muscular miRs (myomiRs) play a key role in muscle cell growth and in some type of cancers. Here, we show that miR133a is upregulated in individuals that undertake physical exercise. We used a skeletal muscle differentiation model to dissect miR-133a's role and to identify new targets, identifying Tropomyosin-4 (TPM4). This protein is expressed during muscle differentiation, but importantly it is an essential component of microfilament cytoskeleton and stress fibres formation. The microfilament scaffold remodelling is an essential step in cell transformation and tumour progression. Using the muscle system, we obtained valuable information about the microfilament proteins, and the knowledge on these molecular players can be transferred to the cytoskeleton rearrangement observed in cancer cells. Further investigations showed a role of TPM4 in cancer physiology, specifically, we found that miR-133a downregulation leads to TPM4 upregulation in colon carcinoma (CRC), and this correlates with a lower patient survival. At molecular level, we demonstrated in myocyte differentiation that TPM4 is positively regulated by the TA isoform of the p63 transcription factor. In muscles, miR-133a generates a myogenic stimulus, reducing the differentiation by downregulating TPM4. In this system, miR-133a counteracts the differentiative TAp63 activity. Interestingly, in CRC cell lines and in patient biopsies, miR-133a is able to regulate TPM4 activity, while TAp63 is not active. The downregulation of the miR leads to TPM4 overexpression, this modifies the architecture of the cell cytoskeleton contributing to increase the invasiveness of the tumour and associating with a poor prognosis. These results add data to the interesting question about the link between physical activity, muscle physiology and protection against colorectal cancer. The two phenomena have in common the cytoskeleton remodelling, due to the TPM4 activity, that is involved in stress fibres formation.
    Keywords:  TAp63; TPM4; Tropomyosins; circulating miRs; colon carcinoma (CRC); miR-133a; miRNAs; physical activity
  36. J Cachexia Sarcopenia Muscle. 2021 Sep 29.
      BACKGROUND: Disuse decreases muscle size and is predictive of mortality across multiple pathologies. Detriments to mitochondrial function are hypothesized to underlie disuse-induced muscle atrophy. Little data exist on early mechanisms contributing to onset of these pathologies, nor is it known how they differ between sexes. The purpose of this study was to examine differential and conserved responses to mitochondrial quality control in male and female mice during the development and progression of disuse-induced atrophy.METHODS: One hundred C57BL/6J mice (50 male and 50 female) were hindlimb unloaded to induce disuse atrophy for 0 (con), 24, 48, 72, or 168 h. At designated time-points, extensor digitorum longus, gastrocnemius, and soleus muscles were collected for analysis of mitochondrial quality control markers.
    RESULTS: One hundred sixty-eight hours of disuse resulted in ~25% lower oxidative muscle fibre CSA in both male (P = 0.003) and female (P = 0.02) mice without any differences due to disuse in glycolytic fibres. In male mice, 48 h of unloading was sufficient to result in ~67% greater mitochondrial oxidative stress as assessed by the reporter gene pMitoTimer compared with 0 h (P = 0.002), this mitochondrial stress preceded detectable muscle loss. However in female mice, mitochondrial oxidative stress did not occur until 168 h of disuse (~40% greater mitochondrial oxidative stress in 168 h compared with 0 h of disuse, P < 0.0001). Blunted oxidative stress in female mice appeared to coincide with greater inductions of autophagy and mitophagy in female mice (~3-fold greater BNIP3 and ~6-fold greater LC3II/I ratio P < 0.0001 and P = 0.038 respectively). Male mice overall had greater reactive oxygen species (ROS) production compared with female mice. Female mice had a greater induction of ROS within 24 h of disuse (~4-fold greater compared with 0 h, P < 0.0001); whereas male mice did not have greater ROS production until 168 h of disuse (~2-fold greater, P < 0.0001). Although all muscle types exhibited some alterations to mitochondrial quality control, such as increased markers of mitophagy and fission, the soleus muscle in both male and female mice exhibited consistent alterations to various markers of mitochondrial quality. Markers of mitochondrial translation were approximately 30-50% lower within 24 h of unloading in both male and female soleus muscle (P value ranges: <0.0001-0.03).
    CONCLUSIONS: Disuse negatively affects mitochondria differentially between sexes during development of muscle wasting. Acutely, female mice may forgo muscle mass to maintain mitochondrial quality compared with male mice. These differences may contribute to divergent clinical manifestations of atrophy.
    Keywords:  Autophagy; Catabolism; Mitophagy; Muscle; Sex differences
  37. Cells. 2021 Aug 26. pii: 2205. [Epub ahead of print]10(9):
      PAX7 transcription factor plays a crucial role in embryonic myogenesis and in adult muscles in which it secures proper function of satellite cells, including regulation of their self renewal. PAX7 downregulation is necessary for the myogenic differentiation of satellite cells induced after muscle damage, what is prerequisite step for regeneration. Using differentiating pluripotent stem cells we documented that the absence of functional PAX7 facilitates proliferation. Such action is executed by the modulation of the expression of two proteins involved in the DNA methylation, i.e., Dnmt3b and Apobec2. Increase in Dnmt3b expression led to the downregulation of the CDK inhibitors and facilitated cell cycle progression. Changes in Apobec2 expression, on the other hand, differently impacted proliferation/differentiation balance, depending on the experimental model used.
    Keywords:  5azaC; ESCs; Pax7; cell cycle; differentiation; iPSCs; mouse; myogenesis; skeletal muscle; stem cells; teratoma
  38. Biotechnol Lett. 2021 Sep 29.
      An ideal rAAV gene editing system not only effectively edits genes at specific site, but also prevents the spread of the virus from occurring off-target or carcinogenic risks. This is important for gene editing research at specific site in vivo. We report a single rAAV containing SaCas9 and guide RNAs under the control of subtle EF1a and tRNA promoters. The capacity of rAAV was compressed, and the editing efficiency was similar to that of the classical Cas9 system in vitro and in vivo. And we inserted the sequence of the green fluorescent protein eGFP into rAAV. The number of cells infected with the rAAV and the region in which the rAAV spreads were known by the fluorescent expression of eGFP in cells. In addition, we demonstrated that myostatin gene in the thigh muscles of C57BL/10 mice was knocked out by the rAAV9-SaCas9 system to make muscle mass increased obviously. The protein eGFP into rAAV has significant implications for our indirect analysis of the editing efficiency of SaCas9 in the genome of the target tissue and reduces the harm caused by off-target editing and prevents other tissue mutations. The rAAV system has substantial potential in improving muscle mass and preventing muscle atrophy.
    Keywords:  Genome editing; Myostatin; Skeletal muscle proliferation; eGFP protein; rAAV-SaCas9 system
  39. FASEB J. 2021 Oct;35(10): e21905
      The study was aimed at investigating the mechanisms and structures which determine mechanical properties of skeletal muscles under gravitational unloading and plantar mechanical stimulation (PMS). We hypothesized that PMS would increase NO production and prevent an unloading-induced reduction in skeletal muscle passive stiffness. Wistar rats were hindlimb suspended and subjected to a daily PMS and one group of stimulated animals was also treated with nitric oxide synthase (NOS) inhibitor (L-NAME). Animals received mechanical stimulation of the feet for 4 h a day throughout 7-day hindlimb suspension (HS) according to a scheme that mimics the normal walking of the animal. Seven-day HS led to a significant reduction in soleus muscle weight by 25%. However, PMS did not prevent the atrophic effect induced by HS. Gravitational unloading led to a significant decrease in maximum isometric force and passive stiffness by 38% and 31%, respectively. The use of PMS prevented a decrease in the maximum isometric strength of the soleus muscle. At the same time, the passive stiffness of the soleus in the PMS group significantly exceeded the control values by 40%. L-NAME (NOS inhibitor) administration attenuated the effect of PMS on passive stiffness and maximum force of the soleus muscle. The content of the studied cytoskeletal proteins (α-actinin-2, α-actinin-3, desmin, titin, nebulin) decreased after 7-day HS, but this decrease was successfully prevented by PMS in a NOS-dependent manner. We also observed significant decreases in mRNA expression levels of α-actinin-2, desmin, and titin after HS, which was prevented by PMS. The study also revealed a significant NOS-dependent effect of PMS on the content of collagen-1a, but not collagen-3a. Thus, PMS during mechanical unloading is able to maintain soleus muscle passive tension and force as well as mRNA transcription and protein contents of cytoskeletal proteins in a NOS-dependent manner.
    Keywords:  cytoskeletal proteins; hindlimb suspension; passive stiffness; plantar mechanical stimulation; soleus muscle
  40. Hum Mol Genet. 2021 Sep 28. pii: ddab276. [Epub ahead of print]
      In Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), mutations in dystrophin result in a loss of the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex at the myofiber membrane, which functions to connect the extracellular matrix with the intracellular actin cytoskeleton. The dystroglycan subcomplex interacts with dystrophin and spans the sarcolemma where its extensive carbohydrates (matriglycan and CT2 glycan) directly interact with the extracellular matrix. In the current manuscript, we show that sarcospan overexpression enhances the laminin-binding capacity of dystroglycan in DMD muscle by increasing matriglycan glycosylation of α-dystroglycan. Furthermore, we find that this modification is not affected by loss of Galgt2, a glycotransferase which catalyzes the CT2 glycan. Our findings reveal that the matriglycan carbohydrates, and not the CT2 glycan, are necessary for sarcospan-mediated amelioration of DMD. Overexpression of Galgt2 in the DMD mdx murine model prevents muscle pathology by increasing CT2 modified α-dystroglycan. Galgt2 also increases expression of utrophin, which compensates for the loss of dystrophin in DMD muscle. We found that combined loss of Galgt2 and dystrophin reduced utrophin expression; however, it did not interfere with sarcospan rescue of disease. These data reveal a partial dependence of sarcospan on Galgt2 for utrophin upregulation. In addition, sarcospan alters the cross-talk between the adhesion complexes by decreasing the association of integrin β1D with dystroglycan complexes. In conclusion, sarcospan functions to re-wire the cell to matrix connections by strengthening the cellular adhesion and signaling which, in turn, increases the resilience of the myofiber membrane.
  41. Cells. 2021 Sep 17. pii: 2459. [Epub ahead of print]10(9):
      This study describes a mouse model of progressive resistance exercise that utilizes a full-body/multi-joint exercise (weight pulling) along with a training protocol that mimics a traditional human paradigm (three training sessions per week, ~8-12 repetitions per set, 2 min of rest between sets, approximately two maximal-intensity sets per session, last set taken to failure, and a progressive increase in loading that is based on the individual's performance). We demonstrate that weight pulling can induce an increase in the mass of numerous muscles throughout the body. The relative increase in muscle mass is similar to what has been observed in human studies, and is associated with the same type of long-term adaptations that occur in humans (e.g., fiber hypertrophy, myonuclear accretion, and, in some instances, a fast-to-slow transition in Type II fiber composition). Moreover, we demonstrate that weight pulling can induce the same type of acute responses that are thought to drive these long-term adaptations (e.g., the activation of signaling through mTORC1 and the induction of protein synthesis at 1 h post-exercise). Collectively, the results of this study indicate that weight pulling can serve as a highly translatable mouse model of progressive resistance exercise.
    Keywords:  growth; hypertrophy; mTOR; myonuclear accretion; protein synthesis; signaling; skeletal muscle; strength
  42. Redox Biol. 2021 Sep 14. pii: S2213-2317(21)00294-9. [Epub ahead of print]47 102135
      Metabolic conditions such as obesity, insulin resistance and glucose intolerance are frequently associated with impairments in skeletal muscle function and metabolism. This is often linked to dysregulation of homeostatic pathways including an increase in reactive oxygen species (ROS) and oxidative stress. One of the main sites of ROS production is the mitochondria, where the flux of substrates through the electron transport chain (ETC) can result in the generation of oxygen free radicals. Fortunately, several mechanisms exist to buffer bursts of intracellular ROS and peroxide production, including the enzymes Catalase, Glutathione Peroxidase and Superoxide Dismutase (SOD). Of the latter, there are two intracellular isoforms; SOD1 which is mostly cytoplasmic, and SOD2 which is found exclusively in the mitochondria. Developmental and chronic loss of these enzymes has been linked to disease in several studies, however the temporal effects of these disturbances remain largely unexplored. Here, we induced a post-developmental (8-week old mice) deletion of SOD2 in skeletal muscle (SOD2-iMKO) and demonstrate that 16 weeks of SOD2 deletion leads to no major impairment in whole body metabolism, despite these mice displaying alterations in aspects of mitochondrial abundance and voluntary ambulatory movement. This is likely partly explained by the suggestive data that a compensatory response may exist from other redox enzymes, including catalase and glutathione peroxidases. Nevertheless, we demonstrated that inducible SOD2 deletion impacts on specific aspects of muscle lipid metabolism, including the abundance of phospholipids and phosphatidic acid (PA), the latter being a key intermediate in several cellular signaling pathways. Thus, our findings suggest that post-developmental deletion of SOD2 induces a more subtle phenotype than previous embryonic models have shown, allowing us to highlight a previously unrecognized link between SOD2, mitochondrial function and bioactive lipid species including PA.
    Keywords:  Lipid metabolism; Mitochondria; ROS; Skeletal muscle; Superoxide
  43. Biomolecules. 2021 Sep 06. pii: 1314. [Epub ahead of print]11(9):
      Amino acids are critical for mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) activation on the lysosomal surface. Amino acid transporters SLC38A9 and SLC36A1 are the members of the lysosomal amino acid sensing machinery that activates mTORC1. The current study aims to clarify the interaction of SLC38A9 and SLC36A1. Here, we discovered that leucine increased expressions of SLC38A9 and SLC36A1, leading to mTORC1 activation. SLC38A9 interacted with SLC36A1 and they enhanced each other's expression levels and locations on the lysosomal surface. Additionally, the interacting proteins of SLC38A9 in C2C12 cells were identified to participate in amino acid sensing mechanism, mTORC1 signaling pathway, and protein synthesis, which provided a resource for future investigations of skeletal muscle mass.
    Keywords:  SLC36A1; SLC38A9; amino acid transporter; leucine; lysosome; mTORC1 signaling pathway
  44. Sports (Basel). 2021 Sep 10. pii: 127. [Epub ahead of print]9(9):
      Human muscle fibers are generally classified by myosin heavy chain (MHC) isoforms characterized by slow to fast contractile speeds. Type I, or slow-twitch fibers, are seen in high abundance in elite endurance athletes, such as long-distance runners and cyclists. Alternatively, fast-twitch IIa and IIx fibers are abundant in elite power athletes, such as weightlifters and sprinters. While cross-sectional comparisons have shown marked differences between athletes, longitudinal data have not clearly converged on patterns in fiber type shifts over time, particularly between slow and fast fibers. However, not all fiber type identification techniques are created equal and, thus, may limit interpretation. Hybrid fibers, which express more than one MHC type (I/IIa, IIa/IIx, I/IIa/IIx), may make up a significant proportion of fibers. The measurement of the distribution of fibers would necessitate the ability to identify hybrid fibers, which is best done through single fiber analysis. Current evidence using the most appropriate techniques suggests a clear ability of fibers to shift between hybrid and pure fibers as well as between slow and fast fiber types. The context and extent to which this occurs, along with the limitations of current evidence, are discussed herein.
    Keywords:  endurance training; fast-twitch fibers; slow-twitch fibers; strength training
  45. Noncoding RNA. 2021 Sep 13. pii: 56. [Epub ahead of print]7(3):
      Small non-coding RNAs (sncRNAs) represent an important class of regulatory RNAs involved in the regulation of transcription, RNA splicing or translation. Among these sncRNAs, small nucleolar RNAs (snoRNAs) mostly originate from intron splicing in humans and are central to posttranscriptional regulation of gene expression. However, the characterization of the complete repertoire of sncRNAs in a given cellular context and the functional annotation of the human transcriptome are far from complete. Here, we report the large-scale identification of sncRNAs in the size range of 50 to 200 nucleotides without a priori on their biogenesis, structure and genomic origin in the context of normal human muscle cells. We provided a complete set of experimental validation of novel candidate snoRNAs by evaluating the prerequisites for their biogenesis and functionality, leading to their validation as genuine snoRNAs. Interestingly, we also found intergenic snoRNAs, which we showed are in fact integrated into candidate introns of unannotated transcripts or degraded by the Nonsense Mediated Decay pathway. Hence, intergenic snoRNAs represent a new type of landmark for the identification of new transcripts that have gone undetected because of low abundance or degradation after the release of the snoRNA.
    Keywords:  gene annotation; human muscle progenitors; intergenic snoRNA; intron; medium RNA-seq; nonsense mediated decay; nucleolar; snoRNA; snoRNA host-gene
  46. Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2021 Sep 13. pii: 9640. [Epub ahead of print]18(18):
      Physical activity could improve the muscle fitness of youth, but the systematic analysis of physical activity elements and muscle fitness was limited. This systematic review and meta-analysis aim to explore the influence of physical activity elements on muscle fitness in children and adolescents. We analyzed literature in Embase, EBSCO, Web of Science, and PubMed databases from January 2000 to September 2020. Only randomized controlled studies with an active control group, which examined at least 1 muscle fitness evaluation index in individuals aged 5-18 years were included. Articles were evaluated using the Jaded scale. Weighted-mean standardized mean differences (SMDs) were calculated using random-effects models. Twenty-one studies and 2267 subjects were included. Physical activity had moderate effects on improving muscle fitness (SMD: 0.58-0.96, p < 0.05). Physical activity element subgroup analysis showed that high-intensity (SMD 0.68-0.99, p < 0.05) physical activity <3 times/week (SMD 0.68-0.99, p < 0.05), and <60 min/session (SMD 0.66-0.76, p < 0.01) effectively improved muscle fitness. Resistance training of ≥3 sets/session (SMD 0.93-2.90, p < 0.01) and <10 repetitions/set (SMD 0.93-1.29, p < 0.05) significantly improved muscle fitness. Low-frequency, high-intensity, and short-duration physical activity more effectively improves muscle fitness in children and adolescents. The major limitation of this meta-analysis was the low quality of included studies. The study was registered in PROSPERO with the registration number CRD42020206963 and was funded mainly by the Ministry of Education of Humanities and Social Science project, China.
    Keywords:  adolescents; children; meta-analysis; muscle fitness; physical activity
  47. Hum Mol Genet. 2021 Sep 25. pii: ddab278. [Epub ahead of print]
      Congenital muscular dystrophy type 1A (MDC1A), the most common congenital muscular dystrophy in Western countries, is caused by recessive mutations in LAMA2, the gene encoding laminin alpha 2. Currently, no cure or disease modifying therapy has been successfully developed for MDC1A. Examination of patient muscle biopsies revealed altered distribution of lysosomes. We hypothesized that this redistribution was a novel and potentially druggable aspect of disease pathogenesis. We explored this hypothesis using candyfloss (caf), a zebrafish model of MDC1A.We found that lysosome distribution in caf zebrafish was also abnormal. This altered localization was significantly associated with fiber detachment and could be prevented by blocking myofiber detachment. Overexpression of TFEB, a transcription factor that promotes lysosomal biogenesis, led to increased lysosome content and decreased fiber detachment. We conclude that genetic manipulation of the lysosomal compartment is able to alter the caf zebrafish disease process, suggesting that lysosome function may be a target for disease modification.
    Keywords:  laminin alpha 2lysosomesmuscular dystrophyMDC1A
  48. Sci Rep. 2021 Sep 30. 11(1): 19417
      In Myotonic Dystrophy type 1 (DM1), a non-coding CTG repeats rare expansion disease; toxic double-stranded RNA hairpins sequester the RNA-binding proteins Muscleblind-like 1 and 2 (MBNL1 and 2) and trigger other DM1-related pathogenesis pathway defects. In this paper, we characterize four D-amino acid hexapeptides identified together with abp1, a peptide previously shown to stabilize CUG RNA in its single-stranded conformation. With the generalized sequence cpy(a/t)(q/w)e, these related peptides improved three MBNL-regulated exon inclusions in DM1-derived cells. Subsequent experiments showed that these compounds generally increased the relative expression of MBNL1 and its nuclear-cytoplasmic distribution, reduced hyperactivated autophagy, and increased the percentage of differentiated (Desmin-positive) cells in vitro. All peptides rescued atrophy of indirect flight muscles in a Drosophila model of the disease, and partially rescued muscle function according to climbing and flight tests. Investigation of their mechanism of action supports that all four compounds can bind to CUG repeats with slightly different association constant, but binding did not strongly influence the secondary structure of the toxic RNA in contrast to abp1. Finally, molecular modeling suggests a detailed view of the interactions of peptide-CUG RNA complexes useful in the chemical optimization of compounds.