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Health & Exercise Physiology
Few treatments for muscle injury exist. The treatments that do exist are aimed at limiting pain and inflammation. However, recent evidence demonstrates that inflammatory cells speed healing after injury. Following injury, macrophages, which are key inflammatory cells, arrive to the site of injury and produce growth factors. Our lab has shown that wnt proteins, known growth factors, are upregulated in the tibialis anterior muscle following injury coinciding with macrophage infiltration. Wnt proteins induce proliferation and differentiation of cells, which is essential to new muscle cell formation. We examined the effects of wnt signaling on muscle injury by genetically deleting wntless (wls), a protein responsible for the release of wnt proteins from macrophages. The deletion of wls from macrophages has previously been confirmed in our lab. We then analyzed the role of macrophage-produced wnts on the formation of new skeletal muscle fibers after chemical injury. We hypothesized that wnt proteins produced from macrophages are important for muscle healing.
Rafferty, Patrick, "The Effects of Wls Deletion in Macrophages on Muscle Repair" (2018). Health and Exercise Physiology Honors Papers. 6.