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Neurol Sci. 2002 Oct;23(4):189-94.

Macrophage-secreted myogenic factors: a promising tool for greatly enhancing the proliferative capacity of myoblasts in vitro and in vivo.

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  • 1Department of Experimental Biomedical Sciences, University of Padua, Via Bassi 58/B, I-35121 Padua, Italy.


In this work we set out to determine if the murine macrophage J774 cell line can be used to produce myogenic growth factors. Activated J774 macrophages were grown in serum-free conditions. The macrophage-conditioned medium (MCM) was then used to treat cultures of primary myoblasts and regenerating muscle tissue, in vitro and in vivo respectively. MCM activity in vitro was tested by analyzing the expression of muscle-specific transcription factors, in parallel with the proliferation and differentiation rates of the cells. The macrophage-secreted factors greatly enhanced the proliferative potential of both rat and human primary myoblasts and were found to be highly muscle-specific. In vivo, MCM administration markedly enhanced the regenerative processes in damaged muscles. The ability to produce large amounts of macrophage-secreted myogenic factor(s) in the absence of serum holds great promise for its biochemical characterization and successive application in therapeutic protocols, both for ex vivo gene therapy and for muscle repair.

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