Exploratory study on the effect of osteoactivin on muscle regeneration in a rat volumetric muscle loss model

PLoS One. 2017 Apr 20;12(4):e0175853. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0175853. eCollection 2017.


Wounds causing extensive injury loss of muscle, also known as volumetric muscle loss (VML), are frequently associated with high-energy civilian trauma and combat-related extremity injuries. Currently, no effective clinical therapy is available for promoting de novo muscle tissue regeneration to restore muscle function following VML. Recent studies have shown evidence that osteoactivin (OA), a transmembrane glycoprotein, has the ability to prevent skeletal muscle atrophy in response to denervation. Therefore the objective of this study is to investigate the potential regenerative effect of OA embedded and delivered via a cross-linked gelatin hydrogel within a volumetric tibialis anterior muscle defect in a rat model. After 4 weeks, however, no evidence for muscle formation was found in defects treated with either low (5 μg/ml) or high (50 μg/ml) OA. It is possible that a different delivery scaffold, delivery kinetics, or OA concentration may have yielded an alternate outcome, or it is also possible that the spaciostructural environment of VML, or the local (versus systemic) delivery of OA, simply does not support any potential regenerative activity of OA in VML. Together with prior work, this study demonstrates that an efficacious and scalable therapy for regenerating muscle volume and function in VML remains a veritable clinical challenge worthy of continued future research efforts.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Male
  • Membrane Glycoproteins / administration & dosage*
  • Models, Biological*
  • Muscle, Skeletal / pathology
  • Muscle, Skeletal / physiopathology*
  • Muscular Atrophy / pathology
  • Muscular Atrophy / physiopathology*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley
  • Regeneration*


  • Gpnmb protein, rat
  • Membrane Glycoproteins

Grant support

This work was supported by Cleveland Clinic LRI Chair’s Innovative Research Fund.