Myogenin regulates denervation-dependent muscle atrophy in mouse soleus muscle

J Cell Biochem. 2011 Aug;112(8):2149-59. doi: 10.1002/jcb.23136.


Muscle inactivity due to injury or disease results in muscle atrophy. The molecular mechanisms contributing to muscle atrophy are poorly understood. However, it is clear that expression of atrophy-related genes, like Atrogin-1 and MuRF-1, are intimately tied to loss of muscle mass. When these atrophy-related genes are knocked out, inactive muscles retain mass. Muscle denervation stimulates muscle atrophy and Myogenin (Myog) is a muscle-specific transcription factor that is highly induced following muscle denervation. To investigate if Myog contributes to muscle atrophy, we have taken advantage of conditional Myog null mice. We show that in the denervated soleus muscle Myog expression contributes to reduced muscle force, mass, and cross-sectional area. We found that Myog mediates these effects, at least in part, by regulating expression of the Atrogin-1 and MuRF-1 genes. Indeed Myog over-expression in innervated muscle stimulates Atrogin-1 gene expression and Myog over-expression stimulates Atrogin-1 promoter activity. Thus, Myog and the signaling cascades regulating its induction following muscle denervation may represent novel targets for therapies aimed at reducing denervation-induced muscle atrophy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Gene Expression Regulation*
  • Mice
  • Mice, Knockout
  • Muscle Denervation
  • Muscle Proteins / biosynthesis
  • Muscle Proteins / genetics
  • Muscle, Skeletal / innervation*
  • Muscle, Skeletal / metabolism*
  • Muscle, Skeletal / pathology
  • Muscular Atrophy / genetics
  • Muscular Atrophy / metabolism*
  • Muscular Atrophy / pathology
  • Myogenin / genetics
  • Myogenin / metabolism*
  • SKP Cullin F-Box Protein Ligases / biosynthesis
  • SKP Cullin F-Box Protein Ligases / genetics
  • Signal Transduction*
  • Tripartite Motif Proteins
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases / biosynthesis
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases / genetics


  • Muscle Proteins
  • Myog protein, mouse
  • Myogenin
  • Tripartite Motif Proteins
  • Fbxo32 protein, mouse
  • SKP Cullin F-Box Protein Ligases
  • Trim63 protein, mouse
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases