Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Natural Hormone May Protect Muscle From Atrophy

Date:
June 13, 2009
Source:
The Endocrine Society
Summary:
Researchers have found a potential new treatment for the common problem of muscle atrophy.

Researchers have found a potential new treatment for the common problem of muscle atrophy. Results of the animal study were presented at The Endocrine Society's 91st Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C.

Related Articles


Muscular atrophy is a debilitating process that results in an extensive loss of muscle mass and function, which greatly worsens quality of life. It occurs in diseases such as cancer, diabetes, AIDS and heart failure, negatively affecting the patients' prognosis. Also, muscular atrophy can occur with aging, inadequate food intake such as in anorexia nervosa, or disuse (in those who are bedridden or who must keep a limb immobile) or as a side effect of glucocorticoid steroid therapy. Nerve injury also triggers severe muscular atrophy.

Currently, there are few options to treat the problem. Some of the treatments, such as anabolic steroids (testosterone) and insulin-like growth factor 1 (IFG-1), raise concerns about safety and effectiveness, said study co-author Andrea Graziani, PhD. He is a molecular biologist with the Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine and the Biotechnology Center for Applied Medical Research, University of Piemonte Orientale, Novara, Italy.

"Because of the wide impact of muscular atrophy on public health, it is of pivotal importance to find new and better drug strategies to treat it," Graziani said.

Graziani and his co-workers are studying des-acyl ghrelin, a form of ghrelin, the appetite-stimulating hormone found in the body. Until recently, researchers thought that des-acyl ghrelin was inactive because it does not share the main activities of ghrelin—stimulating appetite, fat and the release of growth hormone.

However, Graziani's group recently found that des-acyl ghrelin shares some biological activities with ghrelin, such as stimulating differentiation of other cells, including—important to this study—cells that are precursors to skeletal muscle cells.

In this new study, the researchers discovered that des-acyl ghrelin has a direct anti-atrophic activity on the skeletal muscle of mice with muscular atrophy caused by either denervation (nerve injury) or fasting. Mice that were genetically altered to have increased levels of des-acyl ghrelin had less skeletal muscle loss than the untreated control mice. This held true for both causes of muscular atrophy.

The mechanism by which des-acyl ghrelin protects muscle against atrophy is not yet known, the authors reported. However, it is distinct from the action of anabolic steroids and IGF-1.

The following Italian agencies supported this work: Telethon, Regione Piemonte, and Italian Ministry for University and Research. Nicoletta Filigheddu, a researcher at the University of Piemonte Orientale's Biotechnology Center, will present the study's findings.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by The Endocrine Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

The Endocrine Society. "Natural Hormone May Protect Muscle From Atrophy." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 June 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090611112553.htm>.
The Endocrine Society. (2009, June 13). Natural Hormone May Protect Muscle From Atrophy. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 1, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090611112553.htm
The Endocrine Society. "Natural Hormone May Protect Muscle From Atrophy." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090611112553.htm (accessed March 1, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Rehab Robot Helps Restore Damaged Muscles and Nerves

Rehab Robot Helps Restore Damaged Muscles and Nerves

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Mar. 1, 2015) A rehabilitation robot prototype to help restore deteriorated nerves and muscles using electromyography and computer games. Ben Gruber reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Facebook Use Can Lead To Depression

How Facebook Use Can Lead To Depression

Newsy (Mar. 1, 2015) Margaret Duffy of the University of Missouri talks about her study on the social network and the envy and depression that Facebook use can cause. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Could a $34 Smartphone Device Improve HIV Diagnosis in Africa?

Could a $34 Smartphone Device Improve HIV Diagnosis in Africa?

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Feb. 27, 2015) A dongle that plugs into a Smartphone mimics a lab-based blood test for HIV and syphilis and can detect the diseases in 15 minutes, say researchers. Tara Cleary reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Doctor Says Head Transplants Possible Within Two Years

Doctor Says Head Transplants Possible Within Two Years

Buzz60 (Feb. 27, 2015) An Italian doctor is saying he could stick someone&apos;s head onto someone else&apos;s body. Patrick Jones (@Patrick_E_Jones) reports. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins