Bone Morphogenetic Proteins and myostatin pathways: key mediator of human sarcopenia
Manuel Scimeca ; Eleonora Piccirilli ; Francesca Mastrangeli ; et al. ; - ASI Sponsor
Feb - 2017
DOI: 10.1186/s12967-017-1143-6

journal : Journal of Translational Medicine

Volume : 15 ; Issue : 1
type: Article Journal

AbstractBackground:Sarcopenia, osteoporosis and osteoarthritis are the most frequent musculoskeletal disorders affecting older people. The main aim of this study was to test the hypothesis that the balance between BMPs and myostatin pathways regulates the age-related muscle degeneration in OP and OA patients. To this end, we investigated the relationship among the expression of BMP-2/4-7, myostatin and phosphorylated Smads1-5-8 and the muscle quality, evaluated in term of fibers atrophy and satellite cells activity.Methods:In this retrospective study, we collected 123 biopsies of vastus lateralis: 48 biopsies from patients who underwent hip arthroplasty for subcapital fractures of the femur (OP), 55 biopsies from patients who underwent hip arthroplasty for osteoarthritis (OA) and 20 biopsies from patients who underwent hip arthroplasty for high-energy hip fractures (CTRL). Muscle biopsies were fixed in 4% paraformaldehyde and paraffin embedded. Serial sections were used for morphometrical and immunohistochemical analysis (BMP/2/4-7, myostatin, Smads1-5-8, Pax7 and myo-genin). In addition, 1 mm 3 of muscle tissue of each patient was embedded in epon for ultrastructural study.Results:Morphometric data indicated an increase of the number of atrophic fibers in OP patients compare to OA. In line with these data, we found an high regenerative potential in muscle tissues of OA patients due to the significant amount of both Pax7 and myogenin positive satellite cells detected in OA group. In addition, our data showed the decrease of BMP2/4 and -7 expression in OP patients compared to both OA group and CTRL. Conversely, OP patients were characterized by high levels of myostatin expression. A different expression profile was also found for phospho-rylated Smad1-5-8 between OP and OA patients. In particular, OP patients showed a low number of positive phos-phorylated Smad1-5-8 nuclei.Conclusion:The identification of molecular pathways involved in the pathogenesis of sarcopenia open new prospective for the development of drugs able to prevent/treat the muscle impairment that occur in elderly. Results here reported, highlighting the role of BMPs and myostatin pathways in physio-pathogenesis of human sarcopenia, allow us to propose human recombinant BMP-2/7 and anti-myostatin antibodies as a possible therapeutic option for the sarcopenia.

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Notes : FundingThis work was supported by ASI (Italian Space Agency). Project titled “Multidisciplinary Study of the Effects of Microgravity on Bone Cells” call Number search DC-DTE-2011-033.