Bidirectional myofiber transition through altering the photobiomodulation condition

J Photochem Photobiol B. 2020 Nov:212:112041. doi: 10.1016/j.jphotobiol.2020.112041. Epub 2020 Sep 25.


Despite remarkable advancements in modern medicine, muscular atrophy remains as an unsolved problem. It is well known that pathological characteristics of different atrophy types could vary according to the pathophysiological causes. In fact, the lesion of atrophy is not always homogenously distributed but often predominantly evident in either fast or slow myofibers. As the focalization of the atrophic lesions, the existence and the functional impairment of each fast and slow progenitor/satellite cell (SC) are suspected though there are still controversies about this hypothesis. In this study, we isolated Pax7 positive (Pax7+ve) SCs from the tibia anterior (fast) and soleus (slow) muscles respectively and successfully demonstrated, for the first time, the difference between optimal exposure durations of photobiomodulation (PBM) which was known as low level laser irradiation (LLLI) in promoting proliferation of Pax7+ve SC which were acquired from fast and slow muscles respectively. Moreover, a hypertrophy-accompanied bidirectional change in myofiber composition with neuromuscular junction alteration, either from slow to fast or fast to slow, were achieved by applying different PBM durations. Simultaneously, PBM exhibited a synergistic effect with muscle exercise on the increase in myofiber size. Our data suggested the existence of at least two different populations of Pax7+ve SC which possess distinct sensitivities towards PBM. As our data revealed the capability of PBM in bidirectional changes of skeletal muscle composition and neuromuscular junction constitution thereby strengthen its contractility through altering the irradiation condition, we believe PBM showed the potential to be as a promising clinical treatment for muscular atrophy.

Keywords: Bidirectional myofiber transition; Low-level laser; Neuromuscular junction; Synergic hypertrophic effect.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Proliferation / radiation effects
  • Kinetics
  • Low-Level Light Therapy / methods*
  • Male
  • Muscle, Skeletal / cytology*
  • Muscle, Skeletal / metabolism
  • Muscle, Skeletal / radiation effects
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley