Association Analysis of Single-Cell RNA Sequencing and Proteomics Reveals a Vital Role of Ca2+ Signaling in the Determination of Skeletal Muscle Development Potential

Cells. 2020 Apr 22;9(4):1045. doi: 10.3390/cells9041045.


This study is aimed at exploring the mechanism underlying the homeostasis between myogenesis and adipogenesis in skeletal muscle using a special porcine model with a distinct phenotype on muscle growth rate and intramuscular fat deposition. Differentiation potential of muscle-derived Myo-lineage cells of lean-type pigs was significantly enhanced relative to obese-type pigs, while that of their Adi-lineage cells was similar. Single-cell RNA sequencing revealed that lean-type pigs reserved a higher proportion of Myo-lineage cells in skeletal muscle relative to obese-type pigs. Besides, Myo-lineage cells of the lean-type pig settled closer to the original stage of muscle-derived progenitor cells. Proteomics analysis found that differentially expressed proteins between two sources of Myo-lineage cells are mainly involved in muscle development, cell proliferation and differentiation, ion homeostasis, apoptosis, and the MAPK signaling pathway. The regulation of intracellular ion homeostasis, Ca2+ in particular, significantly differed between two sources of Myo-lineage cells. Ca2+ concentration in both cytoplasm and endoplasmic reticulum was lower in Myo-lineage cells of lean-type pigs relative to obese-type pigs. In conclusion, a higher proportion and stronger differentiation capacity of Myo-lineage cells are the main causes for the higher capability of myogenic differentiation and lower intramuscular fat deposition. Relative low concentration of cellular Ca2+ is advantageous for Myo-lineage cells to keep a potent differentiation potential.

Keywords: Ca2+; differentiation potential; ion homeostasis; muscle health; myogenesis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Calcium Signaling / genetics*
  • Cell Differentiation
  • Cell Lineage / genetics
  • Down-Regulation / genetics
  • Gene Ontology
  • Homeostasis
  • Ions
  • Muscle Cells / cytology
  • Muscle Development / genetics*
  • Muscle, Skeletal / growth & development*
  • Proteome / metabolism
  • Proteomics*
  • Sequence Analysis, RNA*
  • Single-Cell Analysis*
  • Swine
  • Up-Regulation / genetics


  • Ions
  • Proteome