Rb1 gene inactivation expands satellite cell and postnatal myoblast pools

Tohru Hosoyama, Koichi Nishijo, Suresh I. Prajapati, Guangheng Li, Charles Keller

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


Satellite cells are well known as a postnatal skeletal muscle stem cell reservoir that under injury conditions participate in repair. However, mechanisms controlling satellite cell quiescence and activation are the topic of ongoing inquiry by many laboratories. In this study, we investigated whether loss of the cell cycle regulatory factor, pRb, is associated with the re-entry of quiescent satellite cells into replication and subsequent stem cell expansion. By ablation of Rb1 using a Pax7CreER,Rb1 conditional mouse line, satellite cell number was increased 5-fold over 6 months. Furthermore, myoblasts originating from satellite cells lacking Rb1 were also increased 3-fold over 6 months, while terminal differentiation was greatly diminished. Similarly, Pax7CreER,Rb1 mice exhibited muscle fiber hypotrophy in vivo under steady state conditions as well as a delay of muscle regeneration following cardiotoxin-mediated injury. These results suggest that cell cycle re-entry of quiescent satellite cells is accelerated by lack of Rb1, resulting in the expansion of both satellite cells and their progeny in adolescent muscle. Conversely, that sustained Rb1 loss in the satellite cell lineage causes a deficit of muscle fiber formation. However, we also show that pharmacological inhibition of protein phosphatase 1 activity, which will result in pRb inactivation accelerates satellite cell activation and/or expansion in a transient manner. Together, our results raise the possibility that reversible pRb inactivation in satellite cells and inhibition of protein phosphorylation may provide a new therapeutic tool for muscle atrophy by short term expansion of the muscle stem cells and myoblast pool.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)19556-19564
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number22
StatePublished - Jun 3 2011
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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