Nemaline Myopathy (NM) is the most common congenital myopathy, characterized by extreme weakness of the respiratory, limb, and facial muscles. Pathogenic variants in Tropomyosin 2 (TPM2), which encodes a skeletal muscle specific actin binding protein essential for sarcomere function, cause a spectrum of musculoskeletal disorders that include NM as well as Cap Myopathy, congenital fiber type disproportion, and distal arthrogryposis (DA). The in vivo pathomechanisms underlying TPM2-related disorders are unknown, so we expressed a series of dominant, pathogenic TPM2 variants in Drosophila embryos and found four variants significantly affected muscle development and muscle function. Transient overexpression of the four variants also disrupted the morphogenesis of mouse myotubes in vitro, and negatively affected zebrafish muscle development in vivo. We used transient overexpression assays in zebrafish to characterize two novel TPM2 variants and one recurring variant that we identified in DA patients (V129A, E139K, A155T), and found these variants caused musculoskeletal defects similar to those of known pathogenic variants. The consistency of musculoskeletal phenotypes in our assays correlated with the severity of clinical phenotypes observed in our DA patients, suggesting disrupted myogenesis is a novel pathomechanism of TPM2 disorders, and that our myogenic assays can predict the clinical severity of TPM2 variants.
Jennifer McAdow, Shuo Yang, Tiffany Ou, Gary Huang, Matthew B. Dobbs, Christina A. Gurnett, Michael J. Greenberg, Aaron N. Johnson
Friedreich’s ataxia (FRDA) is an inherited disorder caused by reduced levels of frataxin (FXN), which is required for iron-sulfur cluster biogenesis. Neurological and cardiac comorbidities are prominent and have been a major focus of study. Skeletal muscle has received less attention despite indications that FXN loss affects it. Here, we show that lean mass is lower, whereas body mass index is unaltered, in separate cohorts of adults and children with FRDA. In adults, lower lean mass correlated with disease severity. To further investigate FXN loss in skeletal muscle, we used a transgenic mouse model of whole-body inducible and progressive FXN depletion. There was little impact of FXN loss when FXN was approximately 20% of control levels. When residual FXN was approximately 5% of control levels, muscle mass was lower along with absolute grip strength. When we examined mechanisms that can affect muscle mass, only global protein translation was lower, accompanied by integrated stress response (ISR) activation. Also in mice, aerobic exercise training, initiated prior to the muscle mass difference, improved running capacity, yet, muscle mass and the ISR remained as in untrained mice. Thus, FXN loss can lead to lower lean mass, with ISR activation, both of which are insensitive to exercise training.
César Vásquez-Trincado, Julia Dunn, Ji In Han, Briyanna Hymms, Jaclyn Tamaroff, Monika Patel, Sara Nguyen, Anna Dedio, Kristin Wade, Chinazo Enigwe, Zuzana Nichtova, David R. Lynch, Gyorgy Csordas, Shana E. McCormack, Erin L. Seifert
Greater than 25% of all men develop an inguinal hernia in their lifetime, and more than 20 million inguinal hernia repair surgeries are performed worldwide each year. The mechanisms causing abdominal muscle weakness, the formation of inguinal hernias, or their recurrence are largely unknown. We previously reported that excessively produced estrogen in the lower abdominal muscles (LAM) triggers extensive LAM fibrosis, leading to hernia formation in a transgenic male mouse model expressing the human aromatase gene (Aromhum). To understand the cellular basis of estrogen-driven muscle fibrosis, we performed single-cell RNA-sequencing on LAM tissue from Aromhum and wild-type littermates. We found a fibroblast-like cell group comprised of six clusters, two of which were validated for their enrichment in Aromhum LAM tissue. One of the novel hernia-associated fibroblast clusters in Aromhum was enriched for the estrogen receptor-α gene (Esr1Hi). Esr1Hi fibroblasts maximally expressed estrogen target genes and seemed to serve as the progenitors of another cluster expressing ECM-altering enzymes (Mmp3Hi) and upregulate expression of pro-inflammatory, pro-fibrotic genes. The discovery of these two novel and unique hernia-associated fibroblasts may lead to the development of novel treatments that can non-surgically prevent or reverse inguinal hernias.
Tanvi Potluri, Matthew J. Taylor, Jonah J. Stulberg, Richard L. Lieber, Hong Zhao, Serdar E. Bulun
Sex/gender disparity in asthma is recognized, and suggests a modulatory role for sex-steroids, particularly estrogen. However, studies including our own show a dichotomous role for estrogen in airway remodeling, making it unclear whether sex hormones are protective or detrimental in asthma, and suggesting a need to explore mechanisms upstream or independent of estrogen. We hypothesize that Kisspeptin (Kp)/KISS1R signaling serves this role. Airway smooth muscle (ASM) is a key structural cell type that contributes to remodeling in asthma. We explored the role of Kp/KISS1R in regulating ASM proliferation. We report novel data that Kp and KISS1R are expressed in human airways, especially ASM, with lower expression in ASM from females compared to males, and asthmatics showing lowest expression compared to non-asthmatics. Proliferation studies showed that cleaved forms of Kp, particularly Kp-10 mitigates PDGF-induced ASM proliferation. Pharmacological inhibition and shRNA knockdown of KISS1R increased basal ASM proliferation, further amplified by PDGF. The anti-proliferative effect of Kp-10 in ASM was found to be mediated by inhibition of MAPK-ERK-Akt pathways, with altered expression of PCNA, C/EBP-alpha, Ki-67, Cyclin-D1, and Cyclin-E leading to cell-cycle arrest at G0/G1 phase. Overall, we demonstrate the importance of Kp/KISS1R signaling in regulating ASM proliferation and a potentially novel therapeutic avenue to blunt remodeling in asthma.
Niyati A. Borkar, Nilesh Sudhakar Ambhore, Rama Satyanarayana Raju Kalidhindi, Christina M. Pabelick, Y.S. Prakash, Venkatachalem Sathish
Mammalian skeletal muscle contains heterogenous myofibers with different contractile and metabolic properties that sustain muscle mass and endurance capacity. The transcriptional regulators that govern these myofiber gene programs have been elucidated. However, the hormonal cues that direct the specification of myofiber types and muscle endurance remain largely unknown. Here we uncover the secreted factor Tsukushi (TSK) as an extracellular signal that is required for maintaining muscle mass, strength, and endurance capacity, and contributes to muscle regeneration. Mice lacking TSK exhibited reduced grip strength and impaired exercise capacity. Muscle transcriptomic analysis revealed that TSK deficiency results in a remarkably selective impairment in the expression of myofibrillar genes characteristic of slow-twitch muscle fibers that is associated with abnormal neuromuscular junction formation. AAV-mediated overexpression of TSK failed to rescue these myofiber defects in adult mice, suggesting that the effects of TSK on myofibers are likely restricted to certain developmental stages. Finally, mice lacking TSK exhibited diminished muscle regeneration following cardiotoxin-induced muscle injury. These findings support a crucial role of TSK as a hormonal cue in the regulation of contractile gene expression, endurance capacity, and muscle regeneration.
Qiuyu Wang, Xiaoxue Qiu, Tongyu Liu, Cheehoon Ahn, Jeffrey F. Horowitz, Jiandie D. Lin
Approximately 80% of pancreatic cancer patients suffer from cachexia and one-third die due to cachexia-related complications such as respiratory failure and cardiac arrest. Although there has been considerable research into cachexia mechanisms and interventions, there are, to date, no FDA-approved therapies. A major contributing factor could be the failure of animal models to accurately recapitulate the human condition. In this study, we generated an aged model of pancreatic cancer cachexia to compare cachexia progression in young versus aged tumor-bearing mice. Comparative skeletal muscle transcriptome analyses identified 3-methyladenine (3-MA) as a candidate anti-wasting compound. In vitro analyses confirmed anti-wasting capacity while in vivo analysis revealed potent anti-tumor effects. Transcriptome analyses of 3-MA-treated tumor cells implicated Perp as a 3-MA target gene. We subsequently 1) observed significantly higher expression of Perp in cancer cell lines compared to control cells, 2) noted a survival disadvantage associated with elevated Perp, and 3) found that 3-MA-associated Perp reduction inhibited tumor cell growth. Finally, we provide in vivo evidence that survival benefits conferred by 3-MA administration are independent of its effect on tumor progression. Taken together, we report a novel mechanism linking 3-MA to Perp inhibition, and further implicate PERP as a novel tumor promoting factor in pancreatic cancer.
Aneesha Dasgupta, Paige C. Arneson-Wissink, Rebecca E. Schmitt, Dong Seong Cho, Alexandra M. Ducharme, Tara L. Hogenson, Eugene W. Krueger, William R. Bamlet, Lizhi Zhang, Gina L. Razidlo, Martin E. Fernandez-Zapico, Jason D. Doles
While current thinking posits that insulin signaling to GLUT4 exocytic translocation and glucose uptake in skeletal muscle and adipocytes is controlled by phosphorylation-based signaling, many proteins in this pathway are acetylated on lysine residues. However, the importance of acetylation and lysine acetyltransferases to insulin-stimulated glucose uptake is incompletely defined. Here, we demonstrate that combined loss of the acetyltransferases E1A binding protein p300 (p300) and cAMP response element binding protein binding protein (CBP) in mouse skeletal muscle causes a complete loss of insulin-stimulated glucose uptake. Similarly, brief (i.e. 1 h) pharmacological inhibition of p300/CBP acetyltransferase activity recapitulates this phenotype in human and rodent myotubes, 3T3-L1 adipocytes, and mouse muscle. Mechanistically, these effects are due to p300/CBP-mediated regulation of GLUT4 exocytic translocation and occurs downstream of Akt signaling. Taken together, we highlight a fundamental role for acetylation and p300/CBP in the direct regulation of insulin-stimulated glucose transport in skeletal muscle and adipocytes.
Vitor F. Martins, Samuel A. LaBarge, Alexandra Stanley, Kristoffer Svensson, Chao-Wei Hung, Omer Keinan, Theodore P. Ciaraldi, Dion Banoian, Ji E. Park, Christina Ha, Byron Hetrick, Gretchen A. Meyer, Andrew Philp, Larry L. David, Robert R. Henry, Joseph E. Aslan, Alan R. Saltiel, Carrie E. McCurdy, Simon Schenk
BACKGROUND. Skeletal muscle maladaptation accompanies chronic kidney disease (CKD) and negatively impacts physical function. Emphasis in CKD has historically been placed on muscle fiber intrinsic deficits, such as altered protein metabolism and atrophy. However, targeted treatment of fiber intrinsic dysfunction has produced limited improvement, whereas alterations within the fiber extrinsic environment have scarcely been examined. METHODS. We investigated alterations to the skeletal muscle interstitial environment with deep cellular phenotyping of biopsies from patients with CKD compared to age-matched control participants and performed transcriptome profiling to define the molecular underpinnings of CKD-associated muscle impairments. We further examined changes in the observed muscle maladaptation following initiation of dialysis therapy for kidney failure. RESULTS. Patients with CKD exhibited a progressive fibrotic muscle phenotype, which was associated with impaired regenerative capacity and lower vascular density. The severity of these deficits was strongly associated with the degree of kidney dysfunction. Consistent with these profound deficits, CKD was associated with broad alterations to the muscle transcriptome, including altered extracellular matrix organization, downregulated angiogenesis, and altered expression of pathways related to stem cell self-renewal. Remarkably, despite the seemingly advanced nature of this fibrotic transformation, dialysis treatment rescued these deficits, restoring a healthier muscle phenotype. Furthermore, after accounting for muscle atrophy, strength and endurance improved after dialysis initiation. CONCLUSION. These data identify a dialysis-responsive muscle fibrotic phenotype in CKD and suggest that the early dialysis window presents a unique opportunity of improved muscle regenerative capacity during which targeted interventions may achieve maximal impact. TRIAL REGISTRATION. NCT01452412 FUNDING. NIH
Camille R. Brightwell, Ameya S. Kulkarni, William Paredes, Kehao Zhang, Jaclyn B. Perkins, Knubian J. Gatlin, Matthew Custodio, Hina Farooq, Bushra Zaidi, Rima Pai, Rupinder S. Buttar, Yan Tang, Michal L. Melamed, Thomas H. Hostetter, Jeffrey E. Pessin, Meredith Hawkins, Christopher S. Fry, Matthew K. Abramowitz
Stromal interaction molecule 1 (STIM1), the sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) transmembrane protein, activates store-operated Ca2+ entry (SOCE) in skeletal muscle and, thereby, coordinates Ca2+ homeostasis, Ca2+-dependent gene expression, and contractility. STIM1 occupies space in the junctional SR membrane of the triads and the longitudinal SR at the Z-line. How STIM1 is organized and is retained in these specific subdomains of the SR is unclear. Here, we identified desmin, the major type III intermediate filament protein in muscle, as a binding partner for STIM1 based on a yeast 2-hybrid screen. Validation of the desmin-STIM1 interaction by immunoprecipitation and immunolocalization confirmed that the CC1-SOAR domains of STIM1 interact with desmin to enhance STIM1 oligomerization yet limit SOCE. Based on our studies of desmin-KO mice, we developed a model wherein desmin connected STIM1 at the Z-line in order to regulate the efficiency of Ca2+ refilling of the SR. Taken together, these studies showed that desmin-STIM1 assembles a cytoskeletal-SR connection that is important for Ca2+ signaling in skeletal muscle.
Hengtao Zhang, Victoria Graham Bryson, Chaojian Wang, TianYu Li, Jaclyn P. Kerr, Rebecca Wilson, Deborah M. Muoio, Robert J. Bloch, Christopher Ward, Paul B. Rosenberg
Obesity, a major healthcare issue, is characterized by metabolic abnormalities in multiple tissues, including the skeletal muscle. Although dysregulation of skeletal muscle metabolism can strongly influence the homeostasis of systemic energy, the underlying mechanism remains unclear. We found promoter hypermethylation and decreased gene expression of fibroblast growth factor 6 (FGF6) in the skeletal muscle of individuals with obesity using high-throughput sequencing. Reduced binding of the cyclic AMP responsive element binding protein-1 (CREB1) to the hypermethylated cyclic AMP (cAMP) response element, which is a regulatory element upstream of the transcription initiation site, partially contributed to the downregulation of FGF6 in patients with obesity. Overexpression of Fgf6 in mice skeletal muscle stimulated protein synthesis, activating the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) pathway, and prevented the increase in weight and the development of insulin resistance in high-fat diet-fed mice. Thus, our findings highlight the role played by Fgf6 in regulating skeletal muscle hypertrophy and whole-body metabolism, indicating its potential in strategies aimed at preventing and treating metabolic diseases.
Bo Xu, Caizhi Liu, Hong Zhang, Rong Zhang, Mengyang Tang, Yan Huang, Li Jin, Lingyan Xu, Cheng Hu, Weiping Jia
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