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Keywords:

  • myoglobin gene;
  • myoglobin synthesis;
  • Duchenne muscular dystrophy;
  • polymyositis;
  • amyotrophic lateral sclerosis

Abstract

Expression of the myoglobin (Mb) gene in skeletal muscle was studied in patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD), polymyositis (PM), or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) by measuring Mb concentration by radioimmunoassay and Mb messenger ribonucleic acid (RNA) (MbmRNA) levels by Northern blot analysis. Mb concentrations in the muscle cells (Mb/noncollagenous protein) were decreased in patients with DMD, PM, or ALS. However, while Mb concentrations per MbmRNA content (Mb/MbmRNA) were decreased in DMD and PM patients, these values were normal in ALS patients. These results suggest that Mb synthesis is increased in muscles of DMD and PM patients, but is not sufficient to compensate for the excessive loss of Mb from the affected muscles, and that the synthesis is decreased in the muscles of ALS patients. © 1994 John Wiley & Sons, Inc.