Regeneration of skeletal muscle is a complex process
that requires the activation of quiescent adult stem
cells, called satellite cells, which are resident in
hypoxic niches in the tissue.
Hypoxia has been recognized as a key factor to
maintain stem cells in an undifferentiated state.
Herein researchers report that hypoxia plays a
fundamental role also in activating myogenesis.
In particular, researchers found that the activation
of the hypoxia-inducible factor (HIF)-1a under
hypoxia, in murine skeletal myoblasts, leads to
activation of MyoD through the noncanonical Wnt/▀-catenin
Moreover, chemical inhibition of HIF-1a activity
significantly reduces differentiation, thus
confirming its crucial role in the process.
Furthermore, hypoxia-preconditioned myoblasts, once
induced to differentiate under normoxic conditions,
tend to form hypertrophic myotubes.
These results support the notion that hypoxia plays
a pivotal role in activating the regeneration
process by directly inducing myogenesis through
Although preliminary, these findings may suggest new
perspective for novel therapeutic targets in the
treatment of several muscle diseases.
For more information
Activation of the hypoxia-inducible factor 1a
promotes myogenesis through the noncanonical Wnt
pathway, leading to hypertrophic myotubes
UniversitÓ degli studi di Milano