EXPERIMENTAL AND BASIC RESEARCH STUDIES
Muscle satellite cells are activated after exercise to exhaustion in Thoroughbred horses
Article first published online: 4 DEC 2012
© 2012 EVJ Ltd
Equine Veterinary Journal
Volume 45, Issue 4, pages 512–517, July 2013
How to Cite
Kawai, M., Aida, H., Hiraga, A. and Miyata, H. (2013), Muscle satellite cells are activated after exercise to exhaustion in Thoroughbred horses. Equine Veterinary Journal, 45: 512–517. doi: 10.1111/evj.12010
- Issue published online: 6 JUN 2013
- Article first published online: 4 DEC 2012
- Accepted manuscript online: 25 OCT 2012 08:45PM EST
- Manuscript Accepted: 16 OCT 2012
- Manuscript Received: 24 MAY 2012
- The Japanese Ministry of Education, Science and Culture. Grant Numbers: 21300251, 238904
- skeletal muscle;
- satellite cell;
Reasons for performing study
Although satellite cells are well known as muscle stem cells capable of adding myonuclei during muscle repair and hypertrophy, the response of satellite cells in horse muscles to a run to exhaustion is still unknown.
To investigate the time course of satellite cell activation in Thoroughbred horse muscle after running to exhaustion. We hypothesised that this type of intense exercise would induce satellite cell activation in skeletal muscle similar to a resistance exercise.
Nine de-trained Thoroughbred horses (6 geldings and 3 mares) aged 3–6 years were studied. Biopsy samples were taken from the gluteus medius muscle of the horses before and 1 min, 3 h, 1 day, 3 days, 1 week and 2 weeks after a treadmill run to exhaustion. The numbers of satellite cells for each fibre type were determined by using immunofluorescence staining. Total RNA was extracted from these samples, and the expressions of interleukin (IL)-6, paired box transcriptional factor (Pax) 7, myogenic differentiation 1 (MyoD), myogenin, proliferating cell nuclear antigen (PCNA), insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-I and hepatocyte growth factor (HGF) mRNA were analysed using real-time reverse transcription-PCR.
The numbers of satellite cells were significantly increased in type I and IIa fibres at 1 week and in type IIa/x fibre at 2 weeks post exercise. The expression of IL-6 mRNA increased significantly by 3 h post exercise. The expression of PCNA mRNA also increased by 1 day after running, indicating that running can initiate satellite cell proliferation. The expression of Pax7, MyoD, myogenin, IGF-I and HGF mRNA peaked at 1 week post exercise.
Satellite cell activation and proliferation could be enhanced after a run to exhaustion without detectable injury as assessed by the histochemical analysis. Understanding the response of satellite cell activation to running exercise provides fundamental information about the skeletal muscle adaptation in Thoroughbred horses.