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Changes in Myonuclear Number During Postnatal Growth – Implications for AAV Gene Therapy for Muscular Dystrophy

Morgan, J; Muntoni, F; (2021) Changes in Myonuclear Number During Postnatal Growth – Implications for AAV Gene Therapy for Muscular Dystrophy. Journal of Neuromuscular Diseases , 8 (s2) S317-S324. 10.3233/JND-210683. Green open access

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Abstract

Adult skeletal muscle is a relatively stable tissue, as the multinucleated muscle fibres contain post-mitotic myonuclei. During early postnatal life, muscle growth occurs by the addition of skeletal muscle stem cells (satellite cells) or their progeny to growing muscle fibres. In Duchenne muscular dystrophy, which we shall use as an example of muscular dystrophies, the muscle fibres lack dystrophin and undergo necrosis. Satellite-cell mediated regeneration occurs, to repair and replace the necrotic muscle fibres, but as the regenerated muscle fibres still lack dystrophin, they undergo further cycles of degeneration and regeneration. AAV gene therapy is a promising approach for treating Duchenne muscular dystrophy. But for a single dose of, for example, AAV coding for microdystrophin, to be effective, the treated myonuclei must persist, produce sufficient dystrophin and a sufficient number of nuclei must be targeted. This latter point is crucial as AAV vector remains episomal and does not replicate in dividing cells. Here, we describe and compare the growth of skeletal muscle in rodents and in humans and discuss the evidence that myofibre necrosis and regeneration leads to the loss of viral genomes within skeletal muscle. In addition, muscle growth is expected to lead to the dilution of the transduced nuclei especially in case of very early intervention, but it is not clear if growth could result in insufficient dystrophin to prevent muscle fibre breakdown. This should be the focus of future studies.

Type: Article
Title: Changes in Myonuclear Number During Postnatal Growth – Implications for AAV Gene Therapy for Muscular Dystrophy
Location: Netherlands
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.3233/JND-210683
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.3233/JND-210683
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2021 – The authors. Published by IOS Press. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial License (CC BY-NC 4.0).
Keywords: Skeletal muscle growth, satellite cells, myonuclei, adeno-associated virus, Duchenne muscular dystrophy, gene therapy
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health > Developmental Neurosciences Dept
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10141876
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