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Interference with Ca2+-Dependent Proteolysis Does Not Alter the Course of Muscle Wasting in Experimental Cancer Cachexia.


ABSTRACT: Protein hypercatabolism significantly contributes to the onset and progression of muscle wasting in cancer cachexia. In this regard, a major role is played by the ATP-ubiquitin-proteasome-dependent pathway and by autophagy. However, little is known about the relevance of the Ca2+-dependent proteolytic system. Since previous results suggested that this pathway is activated in the skeletal muscle of tumor hosts, the present study was aimed to investigate whether inhibition of Ca2+-dependent proteases (calpains) may improve cancer-induced muscle wasting. Two experimental models of cancer cachexia were used, namely the AH-130 Yoshida hepatoma and the C26 colon carcinoma. The Ca2+-dependent proteolytic system was inhibited by treating the animals with dantrolene or by overexpressing in the muscle calpastatin, the physiologic inhibitor of Ca2+-dependent proteases. The results confirm that calpain-1 is overexpressed and calpastatin is reduced in the muscle of rats implanted with the AH-130 hepatoma, and show for the first time that the Ca2+-dependent proteolytic system is overactivated also in the C26-bearing mice. Yet, administration of dantrolene, an inhibitor of the Ca2+-dependent proteases, did not modify tumor-induced body weight loss and muscle wasting in the AH-130 hosts. Dantrolene was also unable to reduce the enhancement of protein degradation rates occurring in rats bearing the AH-130 hepatoma. Similarly, overexpression of calpastatin in the tibialis muscle of the C26 hosts did not improve muscle wasting at all. These observations suggest that inhibiting a single proteolytic system is not a good strategy to contrast cancer-induced muscle wasting. In this regard, a more general and integrated approach aimed at targeting the catabolic stimuli rather than the proteolytic activity of a single pathway would likely be the most appropriate therapeutic intervention.

SUBMITTER: Pin F 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC5395607 | BioStudies | 2017-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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