Format

Send to

Choose Destination
Am J Physiol Cell Physiol. 2014 May 15;306(10):C889-98. doi: 10.1152/ajpcell.00383.2013. Epub 2014 Mar 5.

Collagen content does not alter the passive mechanical properties of fibrotic skeletal muscle in mdx mice.

Author information

1
Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, School of Dental Medicine, Pennsylvania Muscle Institute, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
2
Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, School of Dental Medicine, Pennsylvania Muscle Institute, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania erbarton@dental.upenn.edu.

Abstract

Many skeletal muscle diseases are associated with progressive fibrosis leading to impaired muscle function. Collagen within the extracellular matrix is the primary structural protein providing a mechanical scaffold for cells within tissues. During fibrosis collagen not only increases in amount but also undergoes posttranslational changes that alter its organization that is thought to contribute to tissue stiffness. Little, however, is known about collagen organization in fibrotic muscle and its consequences for function. To investigate the relationship between collagen content and organization with muscle mechanical properties, we studied mdx mice, a model for Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) that undergoes skeletal muscle fibrosis, and age-matched control mice. We determined collagen content both histologically, with picosirius red staining, and biochemically, with hydroxyproline quantification. Collagen content increased in the mdx soleus and diaphragm muscles, which was exacerbated by age in the diaphragm. Collagen packing density, a parameter of collagen organization, was determined using circularly polarized light microscopy of picosirius red-stained sections. Extensor digitorum longus (EDL) and soleus muscle had proportionally less dense collagen in mdx muscle, while the diaphragm did not change packing density. The mdx muscles had compromised strength as expected, yet only the EDL had a significantly increased elastic stiffness. The EDL and diaphragm had increased dynamic stiffness and a change in relative viscosity. Unexpectedly, passive stiffness did not correlate with collagen content and only weakly correlated with collagen organization. We conclude that muscle fibrosis does not lead to increased passive stiffness and that collagen content is not predictive of muscle stiffness.

KEYWORDS:

collagen; fibrosis; passive mechanics; skeletal muscle

PMID:
24598364
PMCID:
PMC4024713
DOI:
10.1152/ajpcell.00383.2013
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Atypon Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center