Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is caused by mutations in the gene encoding dystrophin, which results in dysfunctional signaling pathways within muscle. Previously, we identified microRNA-486 (miR-486) as a muscle-enriched microRNA that is markedly reduced in the muscles of dystrophin-deficient mice (
Matthew S. Alexander, Juan Carlos Casar, Norio Motohashi, Natássia M. Vieira, Iris Eisenberg, Jamie L. Marshall, Molly J. Gasperini, Angela Lek, Jennifer A. Myers, Elicia A. Estrella, Peter B. Kang, Frederic Shapiro, Fedik Rahimov, Genri Kawahara, Jeffrey J. Widrick, Louis M. Kunkel
The ubiquitously expressed multifunctional cytolinker protein plectin is essential for muscle fiber integrity and myofiber cytoarchitecture. Patients suffering from plectinopathy-associated epidermolysis bullosa simplex with muscular dystrophy (EBS-MD) and mice lacking plectin in skeletal muscle display pathological desmin-positive protein aggregation and misalignment of Z-disks, which are hallmarks of myofibrillar myopathies (MFMs). Here, we developed immortalized murine myoblast cell lines to examine the pathogenesis of plectinopathies at the molecular and single cell level. Plectin-deficient myotubes, derived from myoblasts, were fully functional and mirrored the pathological features of EBS-MD myofibers, including the presence of desmin-positive protein aggregates and a concurrent disarrangement of the myofibrillar apparatus. Using this cell model, we demonstrated that plectin deficiency leads to increased intermediate filament network and sarcomere dynamics, marked upregulation of HSPs, and reduced myotube resilience following mechanical stretch. Currently, no specific therapy or treatment is available to improve plectin-related or other forms of MFMs; therefore, we assessed the therapeutic potential of chemical chaperones to relieve plectinopathies. Treatment with 4-phenylbutyrate resulted in remarkable amelioration of the pathological phenotypes in plectin-deficient myotubes as well as in plectin-deficient mice. Together, these data demonstrate the biological relevance of the MFM cell model and suggest that this model has potential use for the development of therapeutic approaches for EBS-MD.
Lilli Winter, Ilona Staszewska, Eva Mihailovska, Irmgard Fischer, Wolfgang H. Goldmann, Rolf Schröder, Gerhard Wiche
α-Actinin-3 deficiency occurs in approximately 16% of the global population due to homozygosity for a common nonsense polymorphism in the
Jane T. Seto, Kate G.R. Quinlan, Monkol Lek, Xi Fiona Zheng, Fleur Garton, Daniel G. MacArthur, Marshall W. Hogarth, Peter J. Houweling, Paul Gregorevic, Nigel Turner, Gregory J. Cooney, Nan Yang, Kathryn N. North
Tendon formation and repair rely on specific combinations of transcription factors, growth factors, and mechanical parameters that regulate the production and spatial organization of type I collagen. Here, we investigated the function of the zinc finger transcription factor EGR1 in tendon formation, healing, and repair using rodent animal models and mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs). Adult tendons of
Marie-Justine Guerquin, Benjamin Charvet, Geoffroy Nourissat, Emmanuelle Havis, Olivier Ronsin, Marie-Ange Bonnin, Mathilde Ruggiu, Isabel Olivera-Martinez, Nicolas Robert, Yinhui Lu, Karl E. Kadler, Tristan Baumberger, Levon Doursounian, Francis Berenbaum, Delphine Duprez
The mechanisms involved in the coordinate regulation of the metabolic and structural programs controlling muscle fitness and endurance are unknown. Recently, the nuclear receptor PPARβ/δ was shown to activate muscle endurance programs in transgenic mice. In contrast, muscle-specific transgenic overexpression of the related nuclear receptor, PPARα, results in reduced capacity for endurance exercise. We took advantage of the divergent actions of PPARβ/δ and PPARα to explore the downstream regulatory circuitry that orchestrates the programs linking muscle fiber type with energy metabolism. Our results indicate that, in addition to the well-established role in transcriptional control of muscle metabolic genes, PPARβ/δ and PPARα participate in programs that exert opposing actions upon the type I fiber program through a distinct muscle microRNA (miRNA) network, dependent on the actions of another nuclear receptor, estrogen-related receptor γ (ERRγ). Gain-of-function and loss-of-function strategies in mice, together with assessment of muscle biopsies from humans, demonstrated that type I muscle fiber proportion is increased via the stimulatory actions of ERRγ on the expression of miR-499 and miR-208b. This nuclear receptor/miRNA regulatory circuit shows promise for the identification of therapeutic targets aimed at maintaining muscle fitness in a variety of chronic disease states, such as obesity, skeletal myopathies, and heart failure.
Zhenji Gan, John Rumsey, Bethany C. Hazen, Ling Lai, Teresa C. Leone, Rick B. Vega, Hui Xie, Kevin E. Conley, Johan Auwerx, Steven R. Smith, Eric N. Olson, Anastasia Kralli, Daniel P. Kelly
Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) is a degenerative skeletal muscle disease caused by mutations in dystrophin. The degree of functional deterioration in muscle stem cells determines the severity of DMD. The mitogen-activated protein kinases (MAPKs), which are inactivated by MAPK phosphatases (MKPs), represent a central signaling node in the regulation of muscle stem cell function. Here we show that the dual-specificity protein phosphatase DUSP10/MKP-5 negatively regulates muscle stem cell function in mice. MKP-5 controlled JNK to coordinate muscle stem cell proliferation and p38 MAPK to control differentiation. Genetic loss of
Hao Shi, Mayank Verma, Lei Zhang, Chen Dong, Richard A. Flavell, Anton M. Bennett
Cachexia is a wasting syndrome associated with cancer, AIDS, multiple sclerosis, and several other disease states. It is characterized by weight loss, fatigue, loss of appetite, and skeletal muscle atrophy and is associated with poor patient prognosis, making it an important treatment target. Ghrelin is a peptide hormone that stimulates growth hormone (GH) release and positive energy balance through binding to the receptor GHSR-1a. Only acylated ghrelin (AG), but not the unacylated form (UnAG), can bind GHSR-1a; however, UnAG and AG share several GHSR-1a–independent biological activities. Here we investigated whether UnAG and AG could protect against skeletal muscle atrophy in a GHSR-1a–independent manner. We found that both AG and UnAG inhibited dexamethasone-induced skeletal muscle atrophy and atrogene expression through PI3Kβ-, mTORC2-, and p38-mediated pathways in myotubes. Upregulation of circulating UnAG in mice impaired skeletal muscle atrophy induced by either fasting or denervation without stimulating muscle hypertrophy and GHSR-1a–mediated activation of the GH/IGF-1 axis. In
Paolo E. Porporato, Nicoletta Filigheddu, Simone Reano, Michele Ferrara, Elia Angelino, Viola F. Gnocchi, Flavia Prodam, Giulia Ronchi, Sharmila Fagoonee, Michele Fornaro, Federica Chianale, Gianluca Baldanzi, Nicola Surico, Fabiola Sinigaglia, Isabelle Perroteau, Roy G. Smith, Yuxiang Sun, Stefano Geuna, Andrea Graziani
Myotonic dystrophy type 1 (DM1) is a complex neuromuscular disease characterized by skeletal muscle wasting, weakness, and myotonia. DM1 is caused by the accumulation of CUG repeats, which alter the biological activities of RNA-binding proteins, including CUG-binding protein 1 (CUGBP1). CUGBP1 is an important skeletal muscle translational regulator that is activated by cyclin D3–dependent kinase 4 (CDK4). Here we show that mutant CUG repeats suppress Cdk4 signaling by increasing the stability and activity of glycogen synthase kinase 3β (GSK3β). Using a mouse model of DM1 (HSALR), we found that CUG repeats in the 3′ untranslated region (UTR) of human skeletal actin increase active GSK3β in skeletal muscle of mice, prior to the development of skeletal muscle weakness. Inhibition of GSK3β in both DM1 cell culture and mouse models corrected cyclin D3 levels and reduced muscle weakness and myotonia in DM1 mice. Our data predict that compounds normalizing GSK3β activity might be beneficial for improvement of muscle function in patients with DM1.
Karlie Jones, Christina Wei, Polina Iakova, Enrico Bugiardini, Christiane Schneider-Gold, Giovanni Meola, James Woodgett, James Killian, Nikolai A. Timchenko, Lubov T. Timchenko
ATR-X syndrome is a severe intellectual disability disorder caused by mutations in the ATRX gene. Many ancillary clinical features are attributed to CNS deficiencies, yet most patients have muscle hypotonia, delayed ambulation, or kyphosis, pointing to an underlying skeletal muscle defect. Here, we identified a cell-intrinsic requirement for Atrx in postnatal muscle growth and regeneration in mice. Mice with skeletal muscle–specific Atrx conditional knockout (Atrx cKO mice) were viable, but by 3 weeks of age presented hallmarks of underdeveloped musculature, including kyphosis, 20% reduction in body mass, and 34% reduction in muscle fiber caliber. Atrx cKO mice also demonstrated a marked regeneration deficit that was not due to fewer resident satellite cells or their inability to terminally differentiate. However, activation of Atrx-null satellite cells from isolated muscle fibers resulted in a 9-fold reduction in myoblast expansion, caused by delayed progression through mid to late S phase. While in S phase, Atrx colocalized specifically to late-replicating chromatin, and its loss resulted in rampant signs of genomic instability. These observations support a model in which Atrx maintains chromatin integrity during the rapid developmental growth of a tissue.
Michael S. Huh, Tina Price O’Dea, Dahmane Ouazia, Bruce C. McKay, Gianni Parise, Robin J. Parks, Michael A. Rudnicki, David J. Picketts
Cardiac natriuretic peptides (NP) are major activators of human fat cell lipolysis and have recently been shown to control brown fat thermogenesis. Here, we investigated the physiological role of NP on the oxidative metabolism of human skeletal muscle. NP receptor type A (NPRA) gene expression was positively correlated to mRNA levels of PPARγ coactivator-1α (PGC1A) and several oxidative phosphorylation (OXPHOS) genes in human skeletal muscle. Further, the expression of NPRA, PGC1A, and OXPHOS genes was coordinately upregulated in response to aerobic exercise training in human skeletal muscle. In human myotubes, NP induced PGC-1α and mitochondrial OXPHOS gene expression in a cyclic GMP–dependent manner. NP treatment increased OXPHOS protein expression, fat oxidation, and maximal respiration independent of substantial changes in mitochondrial proliferation and mass. Treatment of myotubes with NP recapitulated the effect of exercise training on muscle fat oxidative capacity in vivo. Collectively, these data show that activation of NP signaling in human skeletal muscle enhances mitochondrial oxidative metabolism and fat oxidation. We propose that NP could contribute to exercise training–induced improvement in skeletal muscle fat oxidative capacity in humans.
Stefan Engeli, Andreas L. Birkenfeld, Pierre-Marie Badin, Virginie Bourlier, Katie Louche, Nathalie Viguerie, Claire Thalamas, Emilie Montastier, Dominique Larrouy, Isabelle Harant, Isabelle de Glisezinski, Stefanie Lieske, Julia Reinke, Bibiana Beckmann, Dominique Langin, Jens Jordan, Cedric Moro