Journal Article Distinct expression of functionally glycosylated alpha-dystroglycan in muscle and non-muscle tissues of FKRP mutant mice

Blaeser, Anthony  ,  Awano, Hiroyuki  ,  Lu, Pei  ,  Lu, Qi-Long

13 ( 1 )  , p.e0191016 , 2018-01-10 , Public Library Science
The glycosylation of alpha-dystroglycan (α-DG) is crucial in maintaining muscle cell membrane integrity. Dystroglycanopathies are identified by the loss of this glycosylation leading to a breakdown of muscle cell membrane integrity and eventual degeneration. However, a small portion of fibers expressing functionally glycosylated α-DG (F-α-DG) (revertant fibers, RF) have been identified. These fibers are generally small in size, centrally nucleated and linked to regenerating fibers. Examination of different muscles have shown various levels of RFs but it is unclear the extent of which they are present. Here we do a body-wide examination of muscles from the FKRP-P448L mutant mouse for the prevalence of RFs. We have identified great variation in the distribution of RF in different muscles and tissues. Triceps shows a large increase in RFs and together with centrally nucleated fibers whereas the pectoralis shows a reduction in revertant but increase in centrally nucleated fibers from 6 weeks to 6 months of age. We have also identified that the sciatic nerve with near normal levels of F-α-DG in the P448Lneo-mouse with reduced levels in the P448Lneo+ and absent in LARGE (myd). The salivary gland of LARGE(myd) mice expresses high levels of F-α-DG. Interestingly the same glands in the P448Lneo-and to a lesser degree in P448Lneo+ also maintain considerable amount of F-α-DG, indicating the non-proliferating epithelial cells have a molecular setting permitting glycosylation.

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