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Wnt4 activates the canonical beta-catenin pathway and regulates negatively myostatin: functional implication in myogenesis

Abstract : Expression of Wnt proteins is known to be important for developmental processes such as embryonic pattern formation and determination of cell fate. Previous studies have shown that Wn4 was involved in the myogenic fate of somites, in the myogenic proliferation, and differentiation of skeletal muscle. However, the function of this factor in adult muscle homeostasis remains not well understood. Here, we focus on the roles of Wnt4 during C2C12 myoblasts and satellite cells differentiation. We analyzed its myogenic activity, its mechanism of action, and its interaction with the anti-myogenic factor myostatin during differentiation. Established expression profiles indicate clearly that both types of cells express a few Wnts, and among these, only Wnt4 was not or barely detected during proliferation and was strongly induced during differentiation. As attested by myogenic factors expression pattern analysis and fusion index determination, overexpression of Wnt4 protein caused a strong increase in satellite cells and C2C12 myoblast differentiation leading to hypertrophic myotubes. By contrast, exposure of satellite and C2C12 cells to small interfering RNA against Wnt4 strongly diminished this process, confirming the myogenic activity of Wnt4. Moreover, we reported that Wnt4, which is usually described as a noncanonical Wnt, activates the canonical β-catenin pathway during myogenic differentiation in both cell types and that this factor regulates negatively the expression of myostatin and the regulating pathways associated with myostatin. Interestingly, we found that recombinant myostatin was sufficient to antagonize the differentiation-promoting activities of Wnt4. Reciprocally, we also found that the genetic deletion of myostatin renders the satellite cells refractory to the hypertrophic effect of Wnt4. These results suggest that the Wnt4-induced decrease of myostatin plays a functional role during hypertrophy. We propose that Wnt4 protein may be a key factor that regulates the extent of differentiation in satellite and C2C12 cells
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Henri Bernardi, Stéphanie Gay, Yann Fedon, Barbara Vernus, Anne Bonnieu, et al.. Wnt4 activates the canonical beta-catenin pathway and regulates negatively myostatin: functional implication in myogenesis. American Journal of Physiology - Cell Physiology, American Physiological Society, 2011, 300 (5), pp.C1122-C1138. ⟨10.1152/ajpcell.00214.2010⟩. ⟨hal-02651868⟩



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