As we grow older, our muscular function declines. A new study by researchers at Karolinska Institutet shows how an unexpectedly high number of mutations in the stem cells of muscles impair cell regeneration. This discovery may result in new medication to build stronger muscles even when in old age.
The study is published in Nature Communications.
It has already been established that natural ageing impairs the function of our skeletal muscles. We also know that the number and the activity of the muscles’ stem cells decline with age. However, the reasons for this has not been fully understood. In a new study, researchers at Karolinska Institutet have investigated the number of mutations that accumulate in the muscle’s stem cells (satellite cells).
“What is most surprising is the high number of mutations. We have seen how a healthy 70-year-old has accumulated more than 1,000 mutations in each stem cell in the muscle, and that these mutations are not random but there are certain regions that are better protected,” explains Maria Eriksson, Professor at the Department of Biosciences and Nutrition at Karolinska Institutet.
The protection declines with age
The mutations occur during natural cell division, and the regions that are protected are those that are important for the function or survival of the cells. Nonetheless, the researchers were able to identify that this protection declines with age.
“We can demonstrate that this protection diminishes the older you become, indicating an impairment in the cell’s capacity to repair their DNA. And this is something we should be able to influence with new drugs,” explains Maria Eriksson.
The researchers have benefited from new methods to complete the study. The study was performed using single stem cells cultivated to provide sufficient DNA for whole genome sequencing.
Complex mutational burden
“We achieved this in the skeletal muscle tissue, which is absolutely unique. We have also found that there is very little overlap of mutations, despite the cells being located close to each other, representing an extremely complex mutational burden,” explains the study’s first author, Irene Franco, Postdoc in Maria Eriksson’s research group.
The researchers will now continue their work to investigate whether physical exercise can affect the number of accumulated mutations. Is it true that physical exercise from a young age clears out cells with many mutations, or does it result in the generation of a higher number of such cells?
Can result in new exercise programmes
“We aim to discover whether it is possible to individually influence the burden of mutations. Our results may be beneficial for the development of exercise programmes, particularly those designed for an ageing population,” explains Maria Eriksson.
The Latest on: Muscle stem cells
ALS treatment delays disease and extends life in rats
on April 18, 2018 at 10:11 am
Although drugs and mechanical devices can help alleviate symptoms such as muscle spasms, there is no effective treatment ... Thomsen was the first author of the study, published today in the journal Stem Cells. Once inside the cortex, the transplanted ... […]
Asterias Biotherapeutic: Spinal Injury Stem Cell Therapy Play
on April 18, 2018 at 5:59 am
Muscle Strength Score SCI at the cervical (neck ... There are at least four different approaches that are ongoing in SCI research or treatment option: 1. Stem Cell therapies, 2. Scar & growth inhibitor reduction, 3. Electrical Stimulation, 4. […]
First mature human heart muscle grown from patient-specific stem cells
on April 8, 2018 at 9:39 pm
Scientists have grown the first human heart muscle that functions just like an adult’s would. Instead of the nine months it takes for a baby’s heart to develop in the womb, they grew a functioning heart from stem cells in just four weeks. Although ... […]
Eureka! First adult-like human heart muscle using stem cells developed
on April 6, 2018 at 7:00 am
In a first, biomedical engineers grew a human heart muscle from stem cells that showed critical hallmarks of adult human heart function, an advance that would help make drug development significantly faster, safer and cheaper. The adult-like human heart ... […]
Science Fiction Becomes Reality As The First Adult-Like Human Heart Muscle Has Been Developed Using Stem Cells
on April 6, 2018 at 4:16 am
We’ve finally reached a point in time where growing organs, tissue and facets of our body have now become a probability in the near future. Taking the advancements we’ve made so far to whole new level, a team of scientists from Columbia University have ... […]
Stem Cells Can Create An Adult-Like Human Heart Muscle: 5 Healthy Foods For Your Heart
on April 6, 2018 at 2:04 am
A team of scientists from the Columbia University developed the first adult-like human heart using stem cells, an advance that would help make drug development quite faster, safer and cheaper. This first adult-like human heart muscle as developed in just ... […]
Despite FDA crackdown, stem cell therapy still ‘wild west’
on April 6, 2018 at 2:03 am
Though the clinic’s website says it injects umbilical cord stem cells “directly into the painful area,” Roper said the nurse inserted the needle into his buttocks muscle, which medical experts say would have little or no effect on back pain. […]
Stem Cells Given Tough Love Are More Eager to Form Adult-Like Heart Tissue
on April 5, 2018 at 6:56 am
Scientists in the U.S. and Portugal have developed a method for growing adult-like human heart muscle from blood-derived human induced pluripotent stem cell–derived cardiomyocytes (hiPS-CMs), in just four weeks. The resulting heart muscle displayed ... […]
Scientists grow beating heart muscle from stem cell for the first time ever
on April 5, 2018 at 4:28 am
New York City – Scientists from Columbia University successfully grew a human heart muscle that functions just as an adult’s would, they grew it in just four weeks. This is a huge step in the felid of studying human physiology as it gives researchers a ... […]
via Google News and Bing News