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REDD1 deletion attenuates cancer cachexia in mice

Brian A. Hain, Haifang Xu, Ashley M. VanCleave, Bradley S. Gordon, Scot R. Kimball, David L. Waning

Abstract: Cancer cachexia is a wasting disorder associated with advanced cancer that contributes to mortality. Cachexia is characterized by involuntary loss of body weight and muscle weakness that affects physical function. Regulated in DNA damage and development 1 (REDD1) is a stress-response protein that is transcriptionally upregulated in muscle during wasting conditions and inhibits mechanistic target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1). C2C12 myotubes treated with Lewis lung carcinoma (LLC)-conditioned media increased REDD1 mRNA expression and decreased myotube diameter. To investigate the role of REDD1 in cancer cachexia, we inoculated 12-week old male wild-type or global REDD1 knockout (REDD1 KO) mice with LLC cells and euthanized 28-days later. Wild-type mice had increased skeletal muscle REDD1 expression, and REDD1 deletion prevented loss of body weight and lean tissue mass, but not fat mass. We found that REDD1 deletion attenuated loss of individual muscle weights and loss of myofiber cross sectional area. We measured markers of the Akt/mTORC1 pathway and found that, unlike wild-type mice, phosphorylation of both Akt and 4E-BP1 was maintained in the muscle of REDD1 KO mice after LLC inoculation, suggesting that loss of REDD1 is beneficial in maintaining mTORC1 activity in mice with cancer cachexia. We measured Foxo3a phosphorylation as a marker of the ubiquitin proteasome pathway and autophagy and found that REDD1 deletion prevented dephosphorylation of Foxo3a in muscles from cachectic mice. Our data provides evidence that REDD1 plays an important role in cancer cachexia through the regulation of both protein synthesis and protein degradation pathways.
Keywords: cachexia / REDD1 / muscle

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