Myogenic regulatory factors (MRFs) induce differentiation in developing muscle. We examined the role of MRFs in the repair of adult muscle using a model of stretch-induced injury in 5-wk-old chickens. The anterior latissimus dorsi muscle was stretched by loading the wing with 10% of body weight, while the contralateral muscle served as a control. At various intervals (0.5-72 h), chickens were killed by CO2 asphyxiation and the muscles were frozen. Slot hybridizations showed that the onset of high qmf1 expression occurred as early as 0.5 h, which was before regenerative processes involving satellite cell proliferation were observed. Maximal qmf1 expression varied among animals from 3 to 16 h and returned to control levels by 72 h. Within a muscle, in situ hybridization showed that maximal qmf1 expression varied spatially with > 60% of the nuclei within active fascicles being positive. We interpret this high percentage to mean that many of the nuclei of preexisting muscle fibers must be expressing qmf1. The expression of the protooncogene c-myc (presumably by proliferating cells such as satellite cells, fibroblasts, and capillary epithelial cells) and the MRF qmf1 (by myoblasts and adult muscle nuclei) are among the early molecular responses of injured muscle. We conclude that myogenic regulatory factors are not permanently repressed after embryonic development and that derepression plays a role in the repair of terminally differentiated myofibers.
- Copyright © 1993 the American Physiological Society