In this study we tested the hypothesis that green tea extract (GTE) would improve muscle recovery after reloading following disuse. Aged (32 mo) Fischer 344 Brown Norway rats were randomly assigned to receive either 14 days of hindlimb suspension (HLS) or 14 days of HLS followed by normal ambulatory function for 14 days (recovery). Additional animals served as cage controls. The rats were given GTE (50 mg/kg body wt) or water (vehicle) by gavage 7 days before and throughout the experimental periods. Compared with vehicle treatment, GTE significantly attenuated the loss of hindlimb plantaris muscle mass (-24.8% vs. -10.7%, P < 0.05) and tetanic force (-43.7% vs. -25.9%, P <0.05) during HLS. Although GTE failed to further improve recovery of muscle function or mass compared with vehicle treatment, animals given green tea via gavage maintained the lower losses of muscle mass that were found during HLS (-25.2% vs. -16.0%, P < 0.05) and force (-45.7 vs. -34.4%, P < 0.05) after the reloading periods. In addition, compared with vehicle treatment, GTE attenuated muscle fiber cross-sectional area loss in both plantaris (-39.9% vs. -23.9%, P < 0.05) and soleus (-37.2% vs. -17.6%) muscles after HLS. This green tea-induced difference was not transient but was maintained over the reloading period for plantaris (-45.6% vs. -21.5%, P <0.05) and soleus muscle fiber cross-sectional area (-38.7% vs. -10.9%, P <0.05). GTE increased satellite cell proliferation and differentiation in plantaris and soleus muscles during recovery from HLS compared with vehicle-treated muscles and decreased oxidative stress and abundance of the Bcl-2-associated X protein (Bax), yet this did not further improve muscle recovery in reloaded muscles. These data suggest that muscle recovery following disuse in aging is complex. Although satellite cell proliferation and differentiation are critical for muscle repair to occur, green tea-induced changes in satellite cell number is by itself insufficient to improve muscle recovery following a period of atrophy in old rats.
Aging exacerbates muscle loss and slows the recovery of muscle mass and function after disuse. In this study we investigated the potential that epigallocatechin gallate (EGCg), an abundant catechin in green tea, would reduce signaling for apoptosis and promote skeletal muscle recovery in the fast plantaris muscle and the slow soleus muscle after hindlimb unloading (HLS) in senescent animals. Fischer 344 × Brown Norway inbred rats (age 34 mo.) received either EGCg (50 mg/kg body weight), or water daily by gavage. One group of animals received HLS for 14 days and a second group of rats received 14 days of HLS, then the HLS was removed and they recovered from this forced disuse for 2 weeks. Animals that received EGCg over the HLS followed by 14 days of recovery, had a 14% greater plantaris muscle weight (p <0.05) as compared to the animals treated with the vehicle over this same period. Plantaris fiber area was greater after recovery in EGCg (2715.2 ± 113.8 μm2) vs. vehicle treated animals (1953.0 ± 41.9 μm2). In addition, activation of myogenic progenitor cells was improved with EGCg over vehicle treatment (7.5% vs. 6.2%) in the recovery animals. Compared to vehicle treatment, the apoptotic index was lower (0.24% vs. 0.52%), and the abundance of pro-apoptotic proteins Bax (−22%), and FADD (−77%) were lower in EGCg treated plantaris muscles after recovery. While EGCg did not prevent unloading-induced atrophy, it improved muscle recovery after the atrophic stimulus in fast plantaris muscles. However, this effect was muscle specific because EGCg had no major impact in reversing HLS-induced atrophy in the slow soleus muscle of old rats.
Accumulation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in skeletal muscles and the resulting decline in muscle performance are hallmarks of sarcopenia. However, the precise mechanism by which ROS results in a decline in muscle performance is unclear. We demonstrate that isometric-exercise concomitantly increases the activities of Silent information regulator 1 (SIRT-1) and Poly [ADP-ribose] polymerase (PARP-1), and that activated SIRT-1 physically binds with and inhibits PARP-1 activity by a deacetylation dependent mechanism in skeletal muscle from young mice. In contrast, skeletal muscle from aged mice displays higher PARP-1 activity and lower SIRT-1 activity due to decreased intracellular NAD+ content, and as a result reduced muscle performance in response to exercise. Interestingly, injection of PJ34, a PARP-1 inhibitor, in aged mice increased SIRT-1 activity by preserving intracellular NAD+ content, which resulted in higher skeletal muscle mitochondrial biogenesis and performance. We found that the higher activity of PARP-1 in H2O2-treated myotubes or in exercised-skeletal muscles from aged mice is due to an elevated level of PARP-1 acetylation by the histone acetyltransferase General control of amino acid synthesis protein 5-like 2 (GCN-5). These results suggest that activation of SIRT-1 and/or inhibition of PARP-1 may ameliorate skeletal muscle performance in pathophysiological conditions such as sarcopenia and disuse-induced atrophy in aging.
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