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Local anesthetic effects on gene transcription in human skeletal muscle biopsies


  • This study was supported by the National Institutes of Health (R01 AG020532, R15 AG032127, and R01 AG038576).


Introduction: We examined if epinephrine in the local anesthetic to help control incision-related bleeding interferes with molecular measurements obtained with the Duchenne-Bergström percutaneous needle biopsy technique for sampling human skeletal muscle. Methods: Three groups received 2.5–3.0 ml of 1% lidocaine in 2 injections: (1) 0.5–1.0 ml superficially, which varied among the groups according to (i) −Epi; intra- and subcutaneous without epinephrine, (ii) +Epi −Fascia; intra- and subcutaneous with epinephrine, avoiding the fascia, and (iii) +Epi +Fascia; intra- and subcutaneous with epinephrine, directing a small amount (∽0.2 ml) into the fascia area; and (2) ∽2.0 ml without epinephrine into the fascia area for all subjects. A muscle biopsy was obtained 5–10 min later for IL-6 and MuRF-1 mRNA levels. Results: IL-6 mRNA levels were low in −Epi and +Epi −Fascia, but ∽300-fold higher in +Epi +Fascia. MuRF-1 mRNA levels were similar among the groups. Conclusions: Lidocaine with epinephrine can confound intramuscular measurements from needle biopsies, but this can be avoided with a careful injection approach. Muscle Nerve 48: 591–593, 2013