Nav: Home

Study identifies potential drug targets for muscular dystrophy treatments

January 09, 2017

Myotonic dystrophy type I (MD1) is a common form of muscular dystrophy associated with muscle wasting, weakness, and myotonia. These symptoms are linked to the accumulation of toxic gene transcripts in muscle cells that result from abnormal gene splicing. Recent studies have indicated that muscle cell health and function depend critically on the pathways that support energy balance and autophagy, a process that helps degrade and recycle cellular debris. This week in the JCI, a study led by Perrine Castets at the University of Basel has demonstrated that pharmacological treatments targeting AMPK and mTOR signaling pathways, which regulate energy balance and autophagy in cells, improve the symptoms of MD1 in a mouse model. They initially observed that AMPK and mTORC1 pathways were disrupted in muscle tissue from the MD1 model mice. Further investigation revealed that autophagy was also impaired in MD1 muscle, and this impairment contributed to dystrophy-like symptoms in the mice. When MD1 mice were treated with a drug that activated AMPK signaling, they displayed improvements in muscle function as well as reductions in abnormal gene splicing. Treating MD1 mice with rapamycin, a clinically-approved drug that activates mTORC1 signaling, also reduced signs of muscle pathology. These findings identify targets in the AMPK and mTORC1 pathways that may be potential therapies for MD1.
-end-
TITLE: Targeting deregulated AMPK/mTORC1 pathways improves muscle function in myotonic dystrophy type I

AUTHOR CONTACT:

Perrine Castets
Biozentrum, University of Basel
perrine.castets@unibas.ch

View this article at:http://www.jci.org/articles/view/89616?key=65a8cb5001c8a0dad1e1

JCI Journals

Related Muscular Dystrophy Articles:

New therapy targets cause of adult-onset muscular dystrophy
The compound designed at Scripps Research, called Cugamycin, works by recognizing toxic RNA repeats and destroying the garbled gene transcript.
Gene therapy cassettes improved for muscular dystrophy
Experimental gene therapy cassettes for Duchenne muscular dystrophy have been modified to deliver better performance.
Discovery points to innovative new way to treat Duchenne muscular dystrophy
Researchers at The Ottawa Hospital and the University of Ottawa have discovered a new way to treat the loss of muscle function caused by Duchenne muscular dystrophy in animal models of the disease.
Extracellular RNA in urine may provide useful biomarkers for muscular dystrophy
Massachusetts General Hospital researchers have found that extracellular RNA in urine may be a source of biomarkers for the two most common forms of muscular dystrophy, noninvasively providing information about whether therapeutic drugs are having the desired effects on a molecular level.
CRISPR halts Duchenne muscular dystrophy progression in dogs
Scientists for the first time have used CRISPR gene editing to halt the progression of Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) in a large mammal, according to a study by UT Southwestern that provides a strong indication that a lifesaving treatment may be in the pipeline.
Tamoxifen and raloxifene slow down the progression of muscular dystrophy
Steroids are currently the only available treatment to reduce the repetitive cycles of inflammation and disease progression associated with functional deterioration in patients with muscular dystrophy (MD).
Designed proteins to treat muscular dystrophy
The cell scaffolding holds muscle fibers together and protects them from damage.
Gene-editing alternative corrects Duchenne muscular dystrophy
Using the new gene-editing enzyme CRISPR-Cpf1, researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have successfully corrected Duchenne muscular dystrophy in human cells and mice in the lab.
GW researcher finds genetic cause of new type of muscular dystrophy
George Washington University & St. George's University of London research, published in The American Journal of Human Genetics, outlines a newly discovered genetic mutation associated with short stature, muscle weakness, intellectual disability, and cataracts, leading researchers to believe this is a new type of congenital muscular dystrophy.
Not all Europeans receive the same care for Duchenne muscular dystrophy
Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), a progressive muscle disease affecting one in 3,800-6,300 live male births and leads to ambulatory loss, respiratory problems, cardiomyopathy, and early death of patients in their 20s or 30s.
More Muscular Dystrophy News and Muscular Dystrophy Current Events

Top Science Podcasts

We have hand picked the top science podcasts of 2019.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

In & Out Of Love
We think of love as a mysterious, unknowable force. Something that happens to us. But what if we could control it? This hour, TED speakers on whether we can decide to fall in — and out of — love. Guests include writer Mandy Len Catron, biological anthropologist Helen Fisher, musician Dessa, One Love CEO Katie Hood, and psychologist Guy Winch.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#543 Give a Nerd a Gift
Yup, you guessed it... it's Science for the People's annual holiday episode that helps you figure out what sciency books and gifts to get that special nerd on your list. Or maybe you're looking to build up your reading list for the holiday break and a geeky Christmas sweater to wear to an upcoming party. Returning are pop-science power-readers John Dupuis and Joanne Manaster to dish on the best science books they read this past year. And Rachelle Saunders and Bethany Brookshire squee in delight over some truly delightful science-themed non-book objects for those whose bookshelves are already full. Since...
Now Playing: Radiolab

An Announcement from Radiolab