[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Chronic mechanical loading (CML) of skeletal muscle induces compensatory growth and the drug rapamycin has been reported to block this effect. Since rapamycin is considered to be a highly specific inhibitor of the mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR), many have concluded that mTOR plays a key role in CML-induced growth regulatory events. However, rapamycin can exert mTOR-independent actions and systemic administration of rapamycin will inhibit mTOR signalling in all cells throughout the body. Thus, it is not clear if the growth inhibitory effects of rapamycin are actually due to the inhibition of mTOR signalling, and more specifically, the inhibition of mTOR signalling in skeletal muscle cells. To address this issue, transgenic mice with muscle specific expression of various rapamycin-resistant mutants of mTOR were employed. These mice enabled us to demonstrate that mTOR, within skeletal muscle cells, is the rapamycin-sensitive element that confers CML-induced hypertrophy, and mTOR kinase activity is necessary for this event. Surprisingly, CML also induced hyperplasia, but this occurred through a rapamycin-insensitive mechanism. Furthermore, CML was found to induce an increase in FoxO1 expression and PKB phosphorylation through a mechanism that was at least partially regulated by an mTOR kinase-dependent mechanism. Finally, CML stimulated ribosomal RNA accumulation and rapamycin partially inhibited this effect; however, the effect of rapamycin was exerted through a mechanism that was independent of mTOR in skeletal muscle cells. Overall, these results demonstrate that CML activates several growth regulatory events, but only a few (e.g. hypertrophy) are fully dependent on mTOR signalling within the skeletal muscle cells.
Full-text · Article · Sep 2011 · The Journal of Physiology
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In this study, the principles of surface sensing of translation (SUnSET) were used to develop a nonradioactive method for ex vivo and in vivo measurements of protein synthesis (PS). Compared with controls, we first demonstrate excellent agreement between SUnSET and a [(3)H]phenylalanine method when detecting synergist ablation-induced increases in skeletal muscle PS ex vivo. We then show that SUnSET can detect the same synergist ablation-induced increase in PS when used in vivo (IV-SUnSET). In addition, IV-SUnSET detected food deprivation-induced decreases in PS in the heart, kidney, and skeletal muscles, with similar changes being visualized with an immunohistochemical version of IV-SUnSET (IV-IHC-SUnSET). By combining IV-IHC-SUnSET with in vivo transfection, we demonstrate that constitutively active PKB induces a robust increase in skeletal muscle PS. Furthermore, transfection with Ras homolog enriched in brain (Rheb) revealed that a PKB-independent activation of mammalian target of rapamycin is also sufficient to induce an increase in skeletal muscle PS. Finally, IV-IHC-SUnSET exposed the existence of fiber type-dependent differences in skeletal muscle PS, with PS in type 2B and 2X fibers being significantly lower than that in type 2A fibers within the same muscle. Thus, our nonradioactive method allowed us to accurately visualize and quantify PS under various ex vivo and in vivo conditions and revealed novel insights into the regulation of PS in skeletal muscle.
Full-text · Article · Dec 2010 · The FASEB Journal
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: It has been widely proposed that signaling by mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) is both necessary and sufficient for the induction of skeletal muscle hypertrophy. Evidence for this hypothesis is largely based on studies that used stimuli that activate mTOR via a phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3K)/protein kinase B (PKB)-dependent mechanism. However, the stimulation of signaling by PI3K/PKB also can activate several mTOR-independent growth-promoting events; thus, it is not clear whether signaling by mTOR is permissive, or sufficient, for the induction of hypertrophy. Furthermore, the presumed role of mTOR in hypertrophy is derived from studies that used rapamycin to inhibit mTOR; yet, there is very little direct evidence that mTOR is the rapamycin-sensitive element that confers the hypertrophic response. In this study, we determined that, in skeletal muscle, overexpression of Rheb stimulates a PI3K/PKB-independent activation of mTOR signaling, and this is sufficient for the induction of a rapamycin-sensitive hypertrophic response. Transgenic mice with muscle specific expression of various mTOR mutants also were used to demonstrate that mTOR is the rapamycin-sensitive element that conferred the hypertrophic response and that the kinase activity of mTOR is necessary for this event. Combined, these results provide direct genetic evidence that a PI3K/PKB-independent activation of mTOR signaling is sufficient to induce hypertrophy. In summary, overexpression of Rheb activates mTOR signaling via a PI3K/PKB-independent mechanism and is sufficient to induce skeletal muscle hypertrophy. The hypertrophic effects of Rheb are driven through a rapamycin-sensitive (RS) mechanism, mTOR is the RS element that confers the hypertrophy, and the kinase activity of mTOR is necessary for this event.
Full-text · Article · Sep 2010 · Molecular biology of the cell