S-protein is expressed in necrotic fibers in Duchenne muscular dystrophy and polymyositis

Muscle Nerve. 2003 May;27(5):575-81. doi: 10.1002/mus.10360.


Complement regulatory proteins (CD55, CD59) and a fluid-phase complement regulator (S-protein) expression and distribution were studied in Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) and polymyositis by Western blots and immunocytochemistry. In muscle samples from control subjects, no specific signal was detected for CD55 or S-protein, and CD59 was present on the sarcolemma of the muscle fibers. In DMD and polymyositis, Western blots demonstrated a 18-20 kDa band corresponding to CD59, as well as a signal corresponding to S-protein. Immunocytochemistry showed a colocalization between complement membrane attack complex (MAC), a molecule previously demonstrated in necrotic muscle fibers in DMD and polymyositis, and S-protein in necrotic fibers of DMD and polymyositis. Necrotic muscle fibers were more numerous in muscle biopsies of DMD patients with stronger signals for S-protein in Western blots. These results suggest that S-protein is not able to prevent the full assembly of MAC in necrotic fibers of patients with DMD and polymyositis, but might instead inactivate MAC deposits present inside necrotic fibers or participate in the clearance of MAC-attacked muscle fibers.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Antibody Specificity
  • Humans
  • Membrane Glycoproteins / analysis
  • Membrane Glycoproteins / biosynthesis*
  • Membrane Glycoproteins / immunology
  • Muscle Fibers, Skeletal / chemistry
  • Muscle Fibers, Skeletal / metabolism*
  • Muscle Fibers, Skeletal / pathology
  • Muscular Dystrophy, Duchenne / metabolism*
  • Muscular Dystrophy, Duchenne / pathology
  • Necrosis
  • Polymyositis / metabolism*
  • Polymyositis / pathology


  • Antibodies, Monoclonal
  • Membrane Glycoproteins
  • S-protein (control)