[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Skeletal muscle fibers express members of the myosin heavy chain (MyHC) gene family in a fiber-type-specific manner. In avian skeletal muscle it is the expression of the slow MyHC isoforms that most clearly distinguishes slow- from fast-contracting fiber types. Two hypotheses have been proposed to explain fiber-type-specific expression of distinct MyHC genes during development-an intrinsic mechanism based on the formation of different myogenic lineage(s) and an extrinsic, innervation-dependent mechanism. We developed a cell culture model system in which both mechanisms were evaluated during fetal muscle development. Myoblasts isolated from prospective fast (pectoralis major) or slow (medial adductor) fetal chick muscles formed muscle fibers in cell culture, none of which expressed slow MyHC genes. By contrast, when muscle fibers formed from myoblasts derived from the slow muscle were cocultured with neural tube, the muscle fibers expressed a slow MyHC gene, while muscle fibers formed from myoblasts of fast muscle origin continued to express only fast MyHC. Motor endplates formed on the fibers derived from myoblasts of both fast and slow muscle origin in cocultures, and slow MyHC gene expression did not occur when neuromuscular transmission or depolarization was blocked. We have cloned the slow MyHC gene that is expressed in response to innervation and identified it as the slow MyHC 2 gene, the predominant adult slow isoform. cDNAs encoding portions of the three slow myosin heavy chain genes (MyHC1, slow MyHC 2, and slow MyHC 3) were isolated. Only slow MyHC 2 mRNA was demonstrated to be abundant in the cocultures of neural tube and muscle fibers derived from myoblasts of slow muscle origin. Thus, expression of the slow MyHC 2 gene in this in vitro system indicates that formation of slow muscle fiber types is dependent on both myoblast lineage (intrinsic mechanisms) and innervation (extrinsic mechanisms), and suggests neither mechanism alone is sufficient to explain formation of muscle fibers of different types during fetal development.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Myoblasts from embryonic, fetal, and adult quail and chick muscles were transplanted into limb buds of chick embryos to determine if myoblasts can form muscle fibers in heterochronic limbs and to define the conditions that affect the ability of transplanted cells to populate newly developing limb musculature. Myoblasts from each developmental stage were either freshly isolated and transplanted or were cultured prior to transplantation into limb buds of 4- to 5-day (ED4-5) chick embryos. Transplanted myoblasts, regardless of the age of the donor from which they were derived, formed muscle fibers within embryonic limb muscles. Transplanted cloned myoblasts formed muscle fibers, although there was little evidence that the number of transplanted myoblasts significantly increased following transplantation or that they migrated any distance from the site of injection. The fibers that formed from transplanted clonal myoblasts often did not persist in the host limb muscles until ED10. Diminished fiber formation from myoblasts transplanted into host limbs was observed whether myoblasts were cloned or cultured at high density. However, when freshly isolated myoblasts were transplanted, the fibers they formed were numerous, widely dispersed within the limb musculature, and persisted in the muscles until at least ED10. These results indicate that transplanted myoblasts of embryonic, fetal, and adult origin are capable of forming fibers during early limb muscle formation. They also indicate that even in an embryonic chick limb where proliferation of endogenous myoblasts and muscle fiber formation is rapidly progressing, myoblasts that are cultured in vitro do not substantially contribute to long-term muscle fiber formation after they are transplanted into developing limbs. However, when the same myoblasts are freshly isolated and transplanted without prior cell culture, substantial numbers of fibers form and persist after transplantation into developing limbs. Thus, these studies demonstrate that the extent to which transplanted myoblasts fuse to form fibers which persist in host musculature depends upon whether donor myoblasts are freshly isolated or maintained in vitro prior to injection.
Experimental Cell Research 03/1995; 216(2):431-42. · 3.56 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In the limb bud of the 5-day-old avian embryo, when primary muscle fibre formation is beginning and before specific muscles appear, differences in the expression of fast and slow myosin heavy chain genes can be detected among primary fibres of the premuscle masses. Myoblasts that form colonies of fibres of specific types can be isolated from these limb buds. To assess the role of myoblast commitment in specifying fibre types during embryonic development, we cloned myoblasts of specific types from embryonic and adult muscles, transfected them with a reporter gene, and transferred them into developing limb buds. After transfer, cloned myoblasts formed fibres in the limb with the same patterns of myosin heavy chain gene expression as the fibres they formed in cell culture. These results demonstrate that initial skeletal muscle fibre type diversity during avian limb development can originate, in part, from the commitment of distinct myoblast types to the formation of specific fibre types.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: At least three slow myosin heavy chain (MHC) isoforms were expressed in skeletal muscles of the developing chicken hindlimb, and differential expression of these slow MHC isoforms produced distinct fiber types from the outset of skeletal muscle myogenesis. Immunohistochemistry with isoform-specific monoclonal antibodies demonstrated differences in MHC content among the fibers of the dorsal and ventral premuscle masses and distinctions among fibers before splitting of the premuscle masses into individual muscles (Hamburger and Hamilton Stage 25). Immunoblot analyses by sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis of myosin extracted from the hindlimb demonstrated the presence throughout development of different mobility classes of MHCs with epitopes associated with slow MHC isoforms. Immunopeptide mapping showed that one of the MHCs expressed in the embryonic limb was the same slow MHC isoform, slow MHC1 (SMHC1), that is expressed in adult slow muscles. SMHC1 was expressed in the dorsal and ventral premuscle masses, embryonic, fetal, and some neonatal and adult hindlimb muscles. In the embryo and fetus SMHC1 was expressed in future fast, as well as future slow muscles, whereas in the adult only the slow muscles retained expression of SMHC1. Those embryonic muscles destined in the adult to contain slow fibers or mixed fast/slow fibers not only expressed SMHC1, but also an additional slow MHC not previously described, designated as slow MHC3 (SMHC3). Slow MHC3 was shown by immunopeptide mapping to contain a slow MHC epitope (reactive with mAb S58) and to be structurally similar to a MHC expressed in the atria of the adult chicken heart. SMHC3 was designated as a slow MHC isoform because (i) it was expressed only in those muscles destined to be of the slow type in the adult, (ii) it was expressed only in primary fibers of muscles that subsequently are of the slow type, and (iii) it had an epitope demonstrated to be present on other slow, but not fast, isoforms of avian MHC. This study demonstrates that a difference in phenotype between fibers is established very early in the chicken embryo and is based on the fiber type-specific expression of three slow MHC isoforms.