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Denervation leads to the activation of the catabolic pathways, such as the ubiquitin-proteasome and autophagy, resulting in skeletal muscle atrophy and weakness. Furthermore, denervation induces oxidative stress in skeletal muscle, which is thought to contribute to the induction of skeletal muscle atrophy. Several muscle diseases are characterized by denervation, but the molecular pathways contributing to muscle atrophy have been only partially described. Our study delineates the kinetics of activation of oxidative stress response in skeletal muscle following denervation. Despite the denervation-dependent induction of oxidative stress in skeletal muscle, treatments with anti-oxidant drugs do not prevent the reduction of muscle mass. Our results indicate that, although oxidative stress may contribute to the activation of the response to denervation, it is not responsible by itself of oxidative damage or neurogenic muscle atrophy.
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